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US open: Stocks lower as traders look ahead to tomorrow's PCE reading

By Iain Gilbert

Date: Wednesday 28 Feb 2024

US open: Stocks lower as traders look ahead to tomorrow's PCE reading

(Sharecast News) - Wall Street stocks were in the red early on Wednesday as market participants awaited key inflation figures scheduled for tomorrow.
As of 1555 GMT, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 0.16% at 38,910.19, while the S&P 500 lost 0.12% to 5,071.98 and the Nasdaq Composite came out the gate 0.51% weaker at 15,954.06.

The Dow opened 62.22 points lower on Wednesday, extending losses recorded in the previous session.

Data was in focus again on Wednesday, with the American economy expanding at a slightly slower-than-expected pace at the end of 2023. According to the Department of Commerce, gross domestic product grew at a quarterly annualised pace of 3.2% over the three months to December - compared to a preliminary estimate of 3.3%.

"Based on this data, the US consumer looks strong, and inflation is hovering around the Fed's target rate," said Kathleen Brooks at XTB. "This is the second reading of GDP and there is one more release to go, but so far it looks like a soft landing has already happened for the US economy. But, far from make life easy for the Fed, it actually makes it harder, as this data doesn't give a clear signal about when the Fed should cut rates."

Elsewhere on the macro front, mortgage applications sank by 5.6% in the week ended 23 February, extending the year-high 10.6% drop seen in the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association, while a preliminary reading of January wholesale inventories figures showed a 0.1% month-on-month drop, according to the Census Bureau, following last month's 0.4% increase and missing consensus estimates for a 0.1% rise.

However, investors will now be looking ahead to tomorrow's core PCE reading, the Federal Reserve's preferred inflation measure, with the reading likely to dictate market movements for the next while.

In the corporate space, online marketplace eBay was in focus early on Wednesday after raising its quarterly dividend payout and revealing it will fork out an additional $2.0bn on share buybacks, while retailer Urban Outfitters was lower at the bell after posting fourth-quarter earnings that fell short of expectations.

Reporting by Iain Gilbert at

Dow Jones - Risers

Boeing Co. (BA) $205.70 2.13%
Caterpillar Inc. (CAT) $331.41 1.15%
Walt Disney Co. (DIS) $110.47 0.96%
JP Morgan Chase & Co. (JPM) $185.14 0.92%
Home Depot Inc. (HD) $378.17 0.69%
Chevron Corp. (CVX) $153.21 0.69%
McDonald's Corp. (MCD) $294.83 0.36%
3M Co. (MMM) $92.57 0.29%
American Express Co. (AXP) $218.43 0.21%
Amgen Inc. (AMGN) $278.99 0.18%

Dow Jones - Fallers

Unitedhealth Group Inc. (UNH) $486.02 -5.34%
Dow Chemical Co. (DOW) $55.53 -1.32%
Intel Corp. (INTC) $42.25 -1.12%
Apple Inc. (AAPL) $181.10 -0.84%
Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc. (WBA) $21.52 -0.49%
Nike Inc. (NKE) $104.66 -0.47%
International Business Machines Corporation (CDI) (IBM) $184.04 -0.45%
Merck & Co. Inc. (MRK) $128.47 -0.43%
Travelers Company Inc. (TRV) $221.20 -0.31%
Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) $406.52 -0.24%

S&P 500 - Risers

eBay Inc. (EBAY) $47.49 6.97%
Advance Auto Parts (AAP) $67.62 4.43%
CenturyLink Inc. (LUMN) $1.61 4.22%
Agilent Technologies Inc. (A) $137.81 3.97%
Albemarle Corp. (ALB) $132.72 3.21%
Universal Health Services Inc. (UHS) $170.03 2.56%
Mohawk Inds Inc. (MHK) $117.54 2.16%
Boeing Co. (BA) $205.70 2.13%
Weyerhaeuser Co. (WY) $33.56 2.02%
Digital Realty Trust (DLR) $141.01 2.01%

S&P 500 - Fallers

Unitedhealth Group Inc. (UNH) $486.02 -5.34%
HF Sinclair Corporation (DINO) $56.06 -4.44%
Macy's Inc. (M) $19.13 -4.11%
Henry Schein Inc. (HSIC) $75.01 -3.65%
Sealed Air Corp. (SEE) $33.91 -3.20%
Applied Materials Inc. (AMAT) $196.96 -2.91%
Extra Space Storage (EXR) $136.23 -2.85%
Align Technology Inc. (ALGN) $304.95 -2.59%
Resmed Inc. (RMD) $176.42 -2.53%
Humana Inc. (HUM) $353.60 -2.51%

Nasdaq 100 - Risers

Qurate Retail Inc. (QRTEA) $1.68 20.00%
eBay Inc. (EBAY) $47.49 6.97%
Tesla Inc (TSLA) $203.59 1.93%
Hasbro Inc (HAS) $50.91 1.25%
Illumina Inc. (ILMN) $140.82 0.75%
Ross Stores Inc. (ROST) $150.42 0.53%
Comcast Corp. (CMCSA) $42.49 0.52%
Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. (CHKP) $162.33 0.49%
Cintas Corp. (CTAS) $631.04 0.46% Group Limited (TCOM) $44.52 0.45%

Nasdaq 100 - Fallers

Baidu Inc. (BIDU) $104.92 -6.62%, Inc. (JD) $23.11 -4.01%
Henry Schein Inc. (HSIC) $75.01 -3.65%
Applied Materials Inc. (AMAT) $196.96 -2.91%
Align Technology Inc. (ALGN) $304.95 -2.59%
Micron Technology Inc. (MU) $89.57 -2.48%
Liberty Global plc Series C (LBTYK) $18.78 -2.36%
Liberty Global plc Series A (LBTYA) $17.75 -2.29%
Alphabet Inc. Class A (GOOGL) $136.24 -1.90%
QUALCOMM Inc. (QCOM) $155.43 -1.82%


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