USA stocks ended higher on Wednesday, as stronger-than-expected corporate performance shored up rebounds in the overall US stock markets, despite the ongoing concerns over a slowing global economy.
Market jitters over a potential slowdown went deeper, after White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett said Wednesday that the United States could possibly see zero growth for the first quarter this year, if the government shutdown lasts throughout the quarter.
Still, even in the face of upbeat corporate results, fears surrounding tariffs and the longest federal government shutdown in history weighed on investors. "People's wounds are still fresh".
The Dow Jones Industrial Average.DJI rose 171.14 points, or 0.7 percent, to 24,575.62, the S&P 500.SPX gained 5.8 points, or 0.22 percent, to 2,638.7 and the Nasdaq Composite.IXIC added 5.41 points, or 0.08 percent, to 7,025.77.
The Dow is down 153.11 points, or 0.6 per cent. "It's still a lot of uncertainty on the tariff front and the government shutdown front and yet some pretty good earnings coming out of corporate America", said Tim Ghriskey, chief investment strategist at Inverness Counsel in NY.
Of the 11 major sectors of the S&P 500, only energy.SPNY and materials.SPLRCM closed in the red.
Of the 97 S&P 500 companies that have reported fourth-quarter results, 75.3 per cent have topped profit estimates, according to Refinitiv data. Shares of Textron Inc jumped 5.6 percent after beating analyst profit estimates and forecast better-than-expected 2019 profit.
American Airlines Group rose 5.43 percent and Southwest Airlines Co shares gained 3.76 percent after the companies reported quarterly profits above expectations.
Strong earnings from semiconductor companies boosted the Nasdaq, with Texas Instruments winning 6.9 per cent and Lam Research 15.7 per cent following reports.
Today, futures for the Dow Jones are up 181 points; Nasdaq futures are ahead by 67 and the S&P 500 futures are 19.5 higher.
Fourth-quarter reporting season is in full-swing.
The Nasdaq is down 83.77 points, or 1.2 percent.
Volume on US exchanges was 6.83 billion shares, compared to the 7.82 billion average over the last 20 trading days.