Wall Street ends higher; Nvidia surge offsets Nordstrom, Gap slide

A trader works inside his post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange in New York City July 21, 2021. ― Reuters pic
A trader works inside his post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange in New York City July 21, 2021. ― Reuters pic

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NEW YORK, Nov 25 — Wall Street ended higher on Wednesday, lifted by gains in Nvidia and other tech stocks, while Gap and Nordstrom shares tumbled following weak quarterly reports.

Nordstrom and Gap dived after the two retailers reported weak quarterly results and warned of supply chain problems ahead of the crucial US holiday shopping season.

The S&P 500 consumer discretionary sector index rose after data showed US consumer spending increased more than expected in October.

The so-called core PCE price index, the Federal Reserve’s preferred inflation measure, also accelerated in October.

Nvidia rallied as it bounced back from a selloff in Big Tech stocks early this week. The graphics chipmaker is now up about 150 per cent in 2021.

Various Federal Reserve policymakers said they would be open to speeding up elimination of their bond-buying program and move more quickly to raise interest rates if high inflation held, minutes of the US central bank’s last policy meeting showed.

Other data showed weekly jobless claims fell and third-quarter GDP was revised higher, while a University of Michigan survey showed consumer sentiment improved in November.

Coronavirus infections broke records in parts of Europe on Wednesday, with investors worried the continent was again the epicenter of a pandemic that has prompted new curbs on movement.

“Equities are under pressure from a combination of rising interest rates, more cautionary news on the earnings front, and also from Covid developments in Europe,” said Greg Bassuk, chief executive at AXS Investments in Port Chester, New York.

The US stock market will be closed on Thursday for the Thanksgiving holiday, and it will have a shortened session on Friday.

Real estate led among 11 S&P 500 sector indexes with a gain of over 1 per cent for most of the session.

Unofficially, the Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.02 per cent to end at 35,807.48 points, while the S&P 500 gained 0.23 per cent to 4,701.54.

The Nasdaq Composite climbed 0.44 per cent to 15,845.23.

Tesla Inc rose as much as 1.9 per cent. In his latest of several recent share sales, CEO Elon Musk sold 934,091 shares of the electric vehicle maker worth US$1.05 billion (RM4.4 billion) after exercising options to buy 2.15 million shares.

PC makers HP Inc and Dell Technologies jumped after they logged a more than four-fold rise in quarterly profits amid increasing demand for personal computers. — Reuters

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