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H&W in the Media

Dow, S&P close within 2% of all-time high despite tech drag

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U.S. stocks closed mixed Wednesday, amid sharp declines in Apple shares on disappointing earnings, as investors eyed the Fed statement.

The Dow Jones industrial average and S&P 500 held post-Fed gains to close slightly higher and within 2 percent of their all-time highs hit last May. The Nasdaq composite closed well off lows but 7 percent below its 52-week intraday high and erasing gains for April so far. The index posted its first five-day losing streak since January 11.

Information technology closed 0.8 percent lower as the greatest decliner in the S&P as Apple fell more than 6 percent. Telecoms and energy led advancers. Facebook closed a touch higher ahead of its after-the-bell earnings report.

“It’s really just earnings, earnings,” said Myles Clouston, senior director at Nasdaq Advisory Services. He noted most investors did not expect the Fed to move at the conclusion of its two-day meeting Wednesday afternoon.

The Federal Reserve kept rates unchanged and continues to expect “only gradual increases” in the Fed funds rate.

“Nothing takes June off the table here,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Securities. “At the end of the day we want June on the table. We want economic data to be improving.”

The U.S. dollar index struggled for direction in volatile trade after the Fed statement release. The euro was last near $1.13 and the yen at 111.5 yen against the greenback.

The U.S. dollar index struggled for direction in volatile trade after the Fed statement release. The euro was last near $1.13 and the yen at 111.5 yen against the greenback.

“The Fed was a non-event. The market continues to decouple on oil prices and the market is continuing to focus on fundamentals and earnings,” said Kevin Mahn, president and CIO at Hennion & Walsh Asset Management.
He said the Fed maintained a “hovish” stance, meaning “they’re caught in this hybrid hawkish, dovish stance.”

Treasury yields held lower after briefly edging off session lows after the Fed statement release.

Click here to read the entire article on CNBC.com.