WORLD

Stock market today: Global stocks advance after Nvidia sets off a rally on Wall Street

Feb 22, 2024, 11:53 PM | Updated: Feb 23, 2024, 1:16 am

HONG KONG (AP) — World markets were mostly higher on Friday after Nvidia delivered stunning results, setting off a rally in other technology companies that carried Wall Street to another record high.

The futures for the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average were down less than 0.1%.

Germany’s DAX added 0.1% to 17,382.15 despite news that the country’s GDP contracted 0.3% in October-December compared to the previous quarter. The CAC 40 in Paris gained 0.1% to 7,916.12. In London, the FTSE 100 was up 0.1%, at 7,691.44.

Tokyo’s markets were closed for a holiday, a day after they surged to an all-time high.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng was virtually unchanged at 16,745.50 and the Shanghai Composite index added 0.6% to 3,004.88.

Standard Chartered, a London-based lender that generates most of its revenue from Asia, reported a profit surge of 18% for 2023, surpassing expectations, meanwhile revealed a $1 billion buyback program. The company’s Hong Kong-listed shares rose 2.2%.

Government data on Wednesday showed few signs of recovery in China’s real estate market, as prices of new homes in first-tier cities fell 0.4% in January from a month earlier, extending a downward trend.

The property sector accounts for nearly a third of China’s economic activity and the industry-wide meltdown has weighed on growth and sapped the confidence of both investors and consumers.

Markets were higher elsewhere in Asia.

Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was up 0.4% at 7,643.60, and the Kospi in Seoul added 0.1% to 2,667.70.

In India, the Sensex gained less than 0.1% and Bangkok’s SET was unchanged.

On Thursday, the S&P 500 rose 2.1% to 5,087.03, an all-time high. The Nasdaq rose 3% to 16,041.62.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, which has a smaller weighting in tech stocks, jumped 1.2%, to 39,069.11. That marks its first close above 39,000.

Nvidia’s stock price surged Thursday after delivering another blowout quarter, setting off a rally in other technology companies that carried Wall Street to another record high.

The chipmaker, which soared 16.4%, reported scorching demand for its semiconductors. Its stock has tripled over the past year thanks to a surge in investor enthusiasm for artificial intelligence. Synopsis, which makes software used to test and develop chips, rose 6.9% after raising its profit forecast.

Other chipmakers and companies involved in the chipmaking industry also gained ground. Advanced Micro Devices rose 10.7% and Lam Research added 4.7%.

Technology stocks have been the driving force behind the market’s rally that started in October. Solid earnings from some of the biggest names in the sector are helping justify and reinforce those gains.

Wall Street’s focus on earnings this week follows economic data from the previous week that prompted a stumble in the market. Inflation data came in hotter than Wall Street expected, while retail sales fell more than anticipated. That raised concerns about the timing of hoped-for interest rate cuts from the Federal Reserve.

Wall Street is now betting that the central bank will start trimming its benchmark rate in June, rather than March.

Investors could get more clarity on inflation next week when the government releases its monthly report on personal consumption and expenditures, the Fed’s preferred measure.

Bond yields were relatively steady. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 4.35% from 4.33% late Thursday.

In energy trading, U.S. benchmark crude oil lost 77 cents to $77.84 a barrel. Brent crude, the international standard, gave up 68 cents to $82.02 per barrel.

The U.S. dollar was trading at 150.64 Japanese yen, up slightly from 150.51 yen. The euro rose to $1.0824 from $1.0823.

World

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