The stock market rally extended further with the S&P 500 hitting a new high and coming near the 5000 level, while the Nasdaq achieved a fresh two-year high. However, the market rally is increasingly becoming a “lockout” rally with new buying opportunities limited and several big winners extended, such as Nvidia. The market is starting to look extended again, raising the need for investors to exercise patience.
Earnings reports from several companies, including Walt Disney, Qualys, Arm Holdings, Monolithic Power Systems, McKesson, and O’Reilly Auto, came in after the close on Wednesday. Disney stock jumped on the back of cost cuts buoying earnings, while ARM skyrocketed due to strong Q3 results and raised full-year guidance. Monolithic Power ran higher and is poised to clear a messy consolidation. However, Qualys tumbled on mixed results and weak guidance, McKesson fell modestly, and O’Reilly Auto slumped after sales came in light.
The Dow Jones futures were hovering just above fair value, S&P 500 futures edged lower, and Nasdaq 100 futures were little changed. The Dow giant Disney provided a lift but the overnight action in futures doesn’t always translate into actual trading in the next regular stock market session. The stock market continued to advance with the Dow Jones rising 0.4%, the S&P 500 index surging 0.8%, and the Nasdaq composite gaining 0.95%. However, market breadth was slightly negative despite the solid gains, with the small-cap Russell 2000 falling 0.2%.