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US close: Stocks mixed following FOMC minutes, Nvidia earnings in focus

(Sharecast News) - Wall Street stocks delivered a mixed performance on Wednesday as attention turned to earnings from chipmaker Nvidia and minutes from the FOMC's latest policy meeting. At the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.13% at 38,612.24, as was the S&P 500 at 4,981.81, while the Nasdaq Composite saw out the session 0.32% weaker at 15,580.87.

The Dow closed 48.44 points higher on Wednesday, taking a small bite out of losses recorded in the previous session.

In focus on Wednesday, chipmaker Nvidia posted record quarterly numbers after the close, with revenues surging 265% on the back of a booming artificial intelligence unit. Concerns regarding the group's high valuation continued to grow in the lead-up to its earnings announcement.

On the macro front, mortgage applications plunged 10.6% in the week ended 16 February, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association of America, extending the previous week's 2.3% decline. Last week's drop marked the sharpest decline in mortgage demand so far this year and came just shy of matching the 10-month-high decline of 10.7% in the final week of 2023. Applications to purchase a new home dropped 10%, while those to refinance a home sank by 11%.

Elsewhere, minutes from the Federal Open Markets Committee's latest policy meeting indicated that the central bank was in no rush to cut interest rates, as policymakers expressed both caution and optimism regarding inflation. They also not only chose to leave their key overnight borrowing rate unchanged but switched up the post-meeting statement to make it clear that no cuts would be coming until they had "greater confidence" in receding inflation.

"Most participants noted the risks of moving too quickly to ease the stance of policy and emphasised the importance of carefully assessing incoming data in judging whether inflation is moving down sustainably to 2%," the minutes stated.

In the corporate space, shares in Palo Alto Networks traded sharply lower after the cybersecurity firm slashed full-year revenue guidance, while SolarEdge Technologies also headed south in early trading on the back of weak first-quarter guidance.

In terms of Wednesday's earnings, banking giant HSBC saw full-year pre-tax profits surge 80% to a record $30.3bn, driven by high interest rates, Wingstop beat on both the top and bottom line but warned that sales had slowed for a fourth-consecutive quarter, while Etsy turned in a quarterly earnings miss on the back of a slow start to the trading year.

Reporting by Iain Gilbert at Sharecast.com

Dow Jones - Risers

Nike Inc. (NKE) $105.27 1.91% Dow Chemical Co. (DOW) $55.71 1.90% Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) $41.10 1.48% Procter & Gamble Co. (PG) $160.40 1.19% Caterpillar Inc. (CAT) $317.14 1.08% Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) $388.27 0.98% Chevron Corp. (CVX) $155.44 0.94% Coca-Cola Co. (KO) $61.24 0.89% JP Morgan Chase & Co. (JPM) $180.90 0.65% Merck & Co. Inc. (MRK) $128.12 0.59%

Dow Jones - Fallers

Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (WBA) $21.75 -2.51% Intel Corp. (INTC) $43.47 -2.36% International Business Machines Corporation (CDI) (IBM) $179.59 -2.04% Walt Disney Co. (DIS) $107.67 -1.62% Walmart Inc. (WMT) $173.70 -1.23% Salesforce.Com Inc. (CRM) $283.08 -0.99% Boeing Co. (BA) $201.57 -0.89% American Express Co. (AXP) $210.89 -0.75% Travelers Company Inc. (TRV) $219.52 -0.28% Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) $402.18 -0.15%

S&P 500 - Risers

Coterra Energy Inc. (CTRA) $26.15 6.21% Travel + Leisure Co (TNL) $43.64 5.54% Nektar Therapeutics (NKTR) $0.69 3.98% Coty Inc. Class A (COTY) $12.60 3.86% Albemarle Corp. (ALB) $118.55 3.25% ConocoPhillips (COP) $112.87 3.04% Eog Resources Inc. (EOG) $116.22 2.86% Zimmer Biomet Holdings Inc (ZBH) $128.41 2.70% Incyte Corp. (INCY) $60.33 2.57% Foot Locker Inc. (FL) $33.33 2.46%

S&P 500 - Fallers

Keysight Technologies Inc. (KEYS) $144.01 -6.73% International Flavors & Fragrances Inc. (IFF) $76.47 -6.40% Verisk Analytics Inc. (VRSK) $237.67 -4.36% Fortinet Inc. (FTNT) $65.34 -3.78% Discover Financial Services (DFS) $120.71 -2.98% Bread Financial Holdings, Inc. (BFH) $36.50 -2.97% Nvidia Corp. (NVDA) $674.72 -2.85% Align Technology Inc. (ALGN) $304.65 -2.83% International Paper Co. (IP) $34.75 -2.83% Charter Communications Inc. (CHTR) $287.30 -2.65%

Nasdaq 100 - Risers

Incyte Corp. (INCY) $60.33 2.57% JD.com, Inc. (JD) $23.79 2.41% Analog Devices Inc. (ADI) $193.72 2.28% Kraft Heinz Co. (KHC) $36.39 2.16% J.B. Hunt Transport Services Inc. (JBHT) $203.18 1.73% Starbucks Corp. (SBUX) $95.02 1.67% Qurate Retail Inc. (QRTEA) $1.22 1.67% Hologic Inc. (HOLX) $75.82 1.66% Gilead Sciences Inc. (GILD) $73.20 1.61% Baidu Inc. (BIDU) $107.22 1.59%

Nasdaq 100 - Fallers

Liberty Global plc Series C (LBTYK) $18.61 -4.52% Verisk Analytics Inc. (VRSK) $237.67 -4.36% Liberty Global plc Series A (LBTYA) $17.70 -4.17% Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. (CHKP) $154.87 -3.27% Nvidia Corp. (NVDA) $674.72 -2.85% Align Technology Inc. (ALGN) $304.65 -2.83% Charter Communications Inc. (CHTR) $287.30 -2.65% Illumina Inc. (ILMN) $136.41 -2.60% Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (WBA) $21.75 -2.51% Intel Corp. (INTC) $43.47 -2.36%

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Important information: This information is not a personal recommendation for any particular investment. If you are unsure about the suitability of an investment you should speak to one of Fidelity’s advisers or an authorised financial adviser of your choice. When you are thinking about investing in shares, it’s generally a good idea to consider holding them alongside other investments in a diversified portfolio of assets. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future returns.

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