Home Stock & Shares US stocks finish lower as Q3 earnings season begins

US stocks finish lower as Q3 earnings season begins

by Jonathan Adams
US stocks

The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.55%, while the S&P 500 lost 0.63% and the Nasdaq Composite shed 0.10%

US stocks closed lower on Tuesday as market participants digested some key corporate earnings and news of a pause in Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine study.

At the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.55% at 28,679.81, while the S&P 500 was 0.63% weaker at 3,511.93 and the Nasdaq Composite saw out the session 0.10% softer at 11,863.90.

The Dow Jones closed 157.71 points lower on Tuesday, cutting into gains recorded in the previous session as stimulus talks remained in focus.

Tuesday’s main focus was the beginning of third-quarter earnings season, with several major US banks being the first off the rank.

Investment manager Blackrock saw assets under management hit a new record in the third quarter of the year as a broad stock market rally helped the firm top both revenue and profit guidance, while banking giant Citigroup posted its largest quarterly profit of the Covid-19 pandemic as trading bonds afforded the firm another windfall.

JPMorgan Chase also recorded a 4% jump in third-quarter income due to the continued rebound in global financial markets.

Going the other way, Delta Air Lines posted a $5.4bn quarterly loss as the Covid-19 pandemic continued to ravage the travel industry, leading the group to warn it could take more than two years to recover from the outbreak.

Elsewhere in the corporate space, Johnson & Johnson, which also posted earnings on Tuesday, revealed that it had paused its Covid-19 vaccine study after one of the trial’s participants had come down with an “unexplained illness”. The pharma giant did not make it immediately clear if the patient had been administered with a placebo or the experimental vaccine itself.

Amazon was in focus as its “Prime Day” event kicked off, while investors also had a keen eye trained on Apple after the tech behemoth announced the iPhone 12, its first 5G-enabled iPhone handset.

On the macro front, consumer price inflation rose as expected last month but was unchanged at the core level amid falling prices for apparel and transportation services. According to the Department of Labor, headline CPI advanced at a month-on-month clip of 0.2% in September, pushing the annual rate of increase from 1.3% in August to 1.4%, in line with expectations.

However, at the core level, which excludes food and energy prices, the year-on-year rate of change was steady at 1.7%, just short of consensus estimates of 1.8%.

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