Positive earnings news helps Wall Street bounce back

The S&P 500 ended higher on Wednesday following a steep drop the day before, with strong revenue forecasts from Microsoft and Visa helping to alleviate worries about slowing global economic growth and rising interest rates.

Microsoft rallied after the software heavyweight late on Tuesday gave a strong revenue forecast, while payments network Visa jumped after it predicted revenue above pre-pandemic levels.

Tuesday’s gains in the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average followed a steep selloff the day before that saw the Nasdaq drop to its lowest close since December 2020 as investors worried that the US Federal Reserve might raise interest rates more than expected in its fight against inflation.

“What we’ve really been seeing is that misses are being punished a little more severely, but that beats are also being rewarded,” said Rob Haworth, a senior investment strategist at US Bank Wealth Management in Seattle. “With interest rates where they are and the 10-year Treasury testing 2.8 percent, I think there is a big question about growth and valuations.”

In extended trade, Facebook-owner Meta Platforms rose 9 percent following its quarterly report. During the trading session it had declined 3.3 percent.

Planemaker Boeing tumbled 7.5 percent after it said it was halting production of 777X jets until after 2023 due to certification problems, as well as weak demand for the wide-body jet.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.19 percent to end at 33,302 points, while the S&P 500 gained 0.21 percent to 4,184.

The Nasdaq Composite dropped 0.01 percent to 12,489.

Tesla recovered 0.6 percent following a 12 percent slump on Tuesday related to concerns that Chief Executive Elon Musk may have to sell shares to fund his US$44 billion buyout of Twitter. (Reuters)