Stocks advanced Wednesday as investors considered another batch of solid quarterly corporate earnings results and looked ahead to more reports.
The S&P 500 extended gains from the regular trading session on Tuesday. The Nasdaq outperformed, with technology shares climbing as Treasury yields paused after a recent run-up. The benchmark 10-year yield eased back from its highest level since November 2019.
Chipotle Mexican Grill’s (CMG) stock rose after the fast-casual restaurant chain posted a quarterly earnings beat and saw margins expand despite concerns over food price inflation and labor costs. Shares of Lyft (LYFT) turned positive to shake off earlier losses after the company forecasted first-quarter revenue that missed expectations, as the Omicron wave weighed on ridership at the start of the new year.
But an otherwise strong set of earnings results has helped underpin stocks in recent weeks, with the S&P 500 pacing toward a third straight weekly gain. Aggregate S&P 500 earnings per share (EPS) are currently exceeding consensus expectations by 6% so far for the latest quarter, according to Bank of America’s update Tuesday. S&P 500 earnings are tracking toward a growth rate of well over 20% on a year-over-year basis.
“Right now what people are looking for in the markets is earnings, because we know moving through 2022 that earnings are going to come under pressure as margins contract and as the economy slows down. It’s why we’re concerned about things like rising interest rates, … elevated inflation prints, [and] a policy misstep this year,” Jack Manley, JPMorgan Asset Management global market strategist, told Yahoo Finance Live on Tuesday. “The what we’re going to be able to avoid any of those potential pitfalls is through earnings.”
Still, those concerns around inflation and the Federal Reserve’s next monetary policy moves remain key areas of uncertainty for investors. And