Nasdaq, S&P 500 close higher for fifth straight day as Netflix shares surge: Live updates

Alex Harring
Hakyung Kim
NEW YORK, NEW YORK - JANUARY 22: Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange during afternoon trading on January 22, 2024 in New York City. The Dow Jones and S&P both hit all time highs with the Dow Jones closing over 38,000 points for the first time ever as stocks continue to rise. (Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)

The S&P 500 rose Wednesday as Netflix led a broader rally among technology names, pushing the broader market to new heights.

The benchmark S&P 500 eked out a gain of 0.08% to 4,868.55, clinching a new all-time closing record. The Nasdaq Composite rose 0.36% to 15,481.92, helped by the tech rally. It marked the fifth straight day of wins for both.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 99.06 points, or 0.26%, to 37,806.39, hurt by declines of more than 2% in Verizon and 3M a day after each reported earnings.

Netflix shares surged more than 10% after the streamer said its total subscriber count hit an all-time high of 260.8 million. Revenue topped analysts' estimates, as did current-quarter earnings guidance.

The earnings report "is a pretty decent tailwind," said Charlie Ripley, senior strategist at Allianz Investment Management. More broadly, "people thought things were fairly balanced, or maybe even positioning for more downside risks, as growth in the economy or activity in the economy continues to decline. But what we've kind of seen is things have been more resilient."

Elsewhere, Microsoft rose nearly 1%, sending its market value briefly higher than $3 trillion for the first time. Meta advanced 1.4%, bringing the Facebook parent's market cap above $1 trillion.

Both gains added to mega-cap tech's strong performance in 2024, which have propelled the S&P 500 to record highs and confirmed a new bull market. Communication services and information technology stocks boosted the broad index on Wednesday, up 1.2% and 0.8%, respectively.

Beyond technology, AT&T slipped about 3% on lower-than-expected earnings. DuPont De Nemours tumbled 14% after preannouncing weak fourth-quarter results and issuing disappointing first-quarter guidance.

Earnings reports will remain a focus of traders, with Tesla, Las Vegas Sands and IBM due after the bell. Of the more than 16% of S&P 500 companies that have reported quarterly financials thus far in the earnings season, over 71% have surpassed Wall Street expectations, according to FactSet.

"The markets are very bullish," said Larry Tentarelli, founder of the Blue Chip Daily Trend Report. And "the key thing right now is the reaction to earnings."

Wed, Jan 24 2024 4:14 PM EST

Nasdaq and S&P 500 close higher; Dow retreats

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite finished Wednesday's session higher.

The broad S&P 500 eked out a narrow gain, clinching another all-time closing record. The Nasdaq finished 0.4% higher as Netflix and other technology rallied.

The Dow underperformed, finishing the session about 0.3% down.

— Alex Harring

Wed, Jan 24 2024 3:46 PM EST

M&A activity is 'on the way up,' Barclays says

Dealmaking activity is set to resume in 2024 as traders anticipate the start of rate cuts this year, Barclays said.

"We see a recovery in M&A and capital market activity as an important theme for 2024," Emmanuel Cau said in a note titled "M&A/capital market activity on the way up." "Financial conditions are starting to improve with lower rates, credit market is fully functional, corporate fundamentals are solid and a strong USD may prompt more cross-regional deals."

Cau recommends small- and mid-caps, and banks ahead of the recovery. He also upgraded diversified financials to overweight.

— Sarah Min

Wed, Jan 24 2024 3:35 PM EST

Bitcoin ETFs saw net outflows on Monday, JPMorgan says

Outflows from the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC) continue to cast a shadow on the new bitcoin ETFs, according to data from JPMorgan.

Analyst Kenneth Worthington said in a note to clients on Wednesday that the bitcoin ETFs saw a net of $85 million in outflows on Monday, thanks to the more than $500 million coming out of the Grayscale fund.

Overall, Grayscale's fund has now seen more than $3.4 billion in outflows, offsetting most of the roughly $4.5 billion brought in by the nine other bitcoin ETFs.

Funds from BlackRock (IBIT) and Fidelity (FBTC) have been the early winners, combining for more than $3 billion in net inflows, including more than $400 million on Monday.

The decline in bitcoin since the approval of the funds could be a sign that investors have been disappointed in the demand for the ETFs so far. Bitcoin was trading at just over $40,000 on Wednesday after breaking above $49,000 earlier in January.

— Jesse Pound

Wed, Jan 24 2024 3:13 PM EST

NYSE tech titan index on pace for best day since August 2023, according to Bespoke

In another show of the technology sector's strength, the NYSE FANG+ Index is up 2.9% today and on track to notch its best day since August 2023, Bespoke Investments shared in a tweet.

The index tracks 10 of the top-traded tech titans and includes Meta, Apple, Amazon, Netflix, Microsoft, Google, Tesla, Nvidia, Snowflake and Broadcom.

Bespoke noted that all 10 stocks included in the index are trading higher during Wednesday's session. Up 12%, Netflix shares lead the index's gains one day after the streaming service topped fourth-quarter revenue estimates and added more subscribers than analysts expected.

— Lisa Kailai Han

Wed, Jan 24 2024 2:47 PM EST

Verizon drags on Dow

The Dow underperformed on Wednesday, hurt by a slide in Verizon stock.

The blue-chip average traded slightly below flat, while the broad S&P 500 gained 0.3%. At session highs, the Dow climbed more than 150 points, 0.4%.

Part of that underperformance came from Verizon, which slipped more than 2%. 3M was the next worst performer, shedding 1.4%. Both companies reported earnings on Tuesday.

— Alex Harring

Wed, Jan 24 2024 2:37 PM EST

Tech stocks boost S&P 500

A rally among technology names aided the S&P 500 as the broad index climbed to new highs.

Communication services and information technology were among the best performing sectors of the 11 that comprise the index, with gains of more than 1% each. As a whole, the S&P 500 increased about 0.3%, on track for yet another record close.

Energy also rose more than 1%, while financials advanced 0.6%.

Those against outweighed losses seen in other sectors. Most notably, the real estate, materials and utilities sectors each slipped more than 1%.

— Alex Harring

Wed, Jan 24 2024 2:32 PM EST

Nasdaq 100 continues climbing

The Nasdaq 100 has climbed more than 60% so far in the current bull run and is now just shy of 6% above its all-time high, according to Bespoke Investment Group. The large-cap technology-focused index has also rallied around 150% off its low seen in March 2020, data from the firm shows.

See Chart...
The Nasdaq 100 over the last 5 years

— Alex Harring

Wed, Jan 24 2024 2:22 PM EST

Jim Cramer says he would buy 4 Chinese stocks now if he were running a hedge fund

CNBC's Jim Cramer said Wednesday that he would buy four Chinese stocks benefitting from Beijng's big monetary policy easing measures, if he were running a hedge fund.

"I would buy the stocks of Alibaba, Baidu, PDD Holdings and JD.Com," Cramer said during the CNBC Investing Club's Monthly Meeting livestream. "That's right. All four. They are the cheapest they have ever been." 

China pledged to reserve ratio requirements for banks by 50 basis points from Feb. 5. This is the first reduction in reserve requirements this year in a bid to boost its struggling economy, after two cuts last year. 

— Matthew Belvedere

Wed, Jan 24 2024 2:19 PM EST

Netflix sits 20% off all-time high with Wednesday's gains

Netflix shares are up more than 12% on the back of strong fourth-quarter subscriber numbers.

But even with Wednesday's move, the stock still sits 20% off of its all-time closing high of $691.69 per share achieved in November 2021, Bespoke Investment Group notes.

The streaming giant's rallied more than 230% since its mid-2022 closing low. It's gained more than 13% in 2024 following last year's 65% surge.

— Samantha Subin

Wed, Jan 24 2024 1:54 PM EST

U.S. crude oil rises more than 1% after winter storm hits production

U.S. crude oil prices rose more than 1% on Wednesday after domestic production took a substantial hit from winter storms earlier this month.

The West Texas Intermediate contract for March rose 97 cents, or 1.3%, to trade at $75.34 a barrel. The Brent contract for March was up 80 cents, or 1.01%, to trade at $80.35.

Prices rose after crude production in the U.S. fell by an estimated 1 million barrels per day during the week ending Jan. 19, according to the Energy Information Agency. U.S. commercial crude inventories also fell by 9.2 million barrels during the same period.

Surging U.S. crude production has weighed on prices for months as traders worry supply is outstripping demand as the economy slows in China.

Beijing also provided a more bullish signal Wednesday when the central bank announced that it would reduce liquidity requirements for financial institutions to help boost economic growth.

— Spencer Kimball

Wed, Jan 24 2024 1:34 PM EST

Ford shares fall after SUV recall

Shares of Ford Motor declined 2% after the company announced Wednesday it would recall more than 2 million Explorer SUVs worldwide.

The recall includes Explorer models from the 2011 through 2019 model years. The automaker cited issues with a trim piece on the roof coming loose.

See Chart...
Ford shares

— Hakyung Kim

Wed, Jan 24 2024 1:08 PM EST

Berkshire Hathaway hits all-time highs

Berkshire Hathaway shares rose to all-time highs during Wednesday's trading. Class A shares of the Omaha-based conglomerate gained more than 1% to hit an intraday record high of $572,325.80 apiece. Meanwhile, Class B shares climbed a similar 1% to a peak of $377.59, the highest level since the shares were created back in 1996.

Warren Buffett's juggernaut has rallied more than 5% this month, outperforming the S&P 500.

See Chart...
All-time stock chart

— Yun Li

Wed, Jan 24 2024 12:38 PM EST

See the stocks making big midday moves

These are some of the stocks posting notable moves in midday trading:

See the full list here.

— Alex Harring, Samantha Subin

Wed, Jan 24 2024 12:14 PM EST

IBM touches highest since late 2014 ahead of post-bell earnings

Shares in staid, old International Business Machines, founded before World War I and creator of the bar code in 1973, on Wednesday touched their highest level since October 2014 ahead of fourth-quarter results due to be released after the market close.

See Chart...
IBM shares over past 12 months.

Evercore ISI analysts led by Amit Daryanani wrote on Monday that "we expect in-line to modest upside vs. consensus revenue/EPS estimates ($17.2B/$3.77)," helped in part by currency tailwinds provided by what had been a weakening dollar since IBM last reported in October. "We also expect IBM to initiate CY24 guidance (potential for modest upside) during their upcoming print with outlook for annual FCF being the key focus area (we expect IBM to guide to $11.0-11.5B in FCF)," Evercore said.

Evercore rates IBM outperform with a $200 price target, against analysts' consensus rating according to FactSet of hold and price target of $161.

IBM earnings per shares estimates for the quarter ending in March 2024 have risen 2% in the past month, FactSet says. The stock is selling for a trailing price-to-earnings ratio of 23.1 now against a five-year average P/E multiple of of 29.5, and still yields 3.8%.

— Scott Schnipper, Michael Bloom

Wed, Jan 24 2024 11:45 AM EST

Netflix heads for best day since October

Netflix climbed almost 12% in late morning trading, making the streaming giant poised to see its best session in more than three months.

Shares surged after the big technology company reported a record number of subscribers and better-than-expected revenue. If that gain holds through Wednesday's closing bell, it would mark the stock's best day since Oct. 19, when shares climbed slightly more than 16%.

See Chart...
Netflix, 1-day

— Alex Harring

Wed, Jan 24 2024 11:17 AM EST

Consumer sentiment remains slow to pick up, says Bank of America

January's preliminary consumer sentiment data showed a slight increase in confidence about the economy — but it has yet to reach pre-pandemic levels, according to Bank of America.

The firm underscored a "vibecession," in which economic data is strong but consumer sentiment remains tepid. The Misery Index, which is calculated using the sum of the unemployment rate and the yearly percentage change in inflation, has typically had a negative correlation with consumer sentiment, according to U.S. economist Jeseo Park.

However, Park noted that the Misery Index and consumer sentiment are not as closely correlated as in the past.

"The degree to which sentiment has picked up has been far less than that of the inverted Misery index—taking us back to the concept of "vibecession". However, we think that term may have run its course, and sentiment should ease further as inflation continues to cool and Fed begins to cut interest rates," Park wrote in a Wednesday note.

— Hakyung Kim

Wed, Jan 24 2024 10:48 AM EST

Microsoft tops $3 trillion market capitalization

Microsoft shares gained 1.4% on Wednesday, boosting the software giant above a $3 trillion market capitalization for the first time on record.

The $3 trillion market cap club is also home to Apple, Earlier this month, Microsoft topped Apple as the most valuable company worldwide. Apple later reclaimed that spot, with its market cap hitting $3.03 trillion during Wednesday's session.

Microsoft first closed above a $2 trillion market cap in June 2021.

Microsoft market value vs. Apple market value

— Samantha Subin

Wed, Jan 24 2024 10:30 AM EST

Banks may be this year's 'coiled spring,' BofA's Subramanian said

Bank stocks could prove to be a "coiled spring" as funds reduce exposure, according to Bank of America strategist Savita Subramanian.

Exposure to banks in the S&P 500 is about 12 percentage points lower than where it started 2023, Subramanian noted. And it's just about 3 percentage points off the lows reached as investors sold off following the Silicon Valley Bank shutdown

"Funds dropped exposure to Banks, despite the strong year-end rally," she told clients.

But industries in new media like entertainment are positioned compared to banks at more than 1 standard deviation above average. Subramanian said that can be a precursor to banks overperforming the sector over the next 12 months.

— Alex Harring

Wed, Jan 24 2024 10:00 AM EST

Services, manufacturing gauges stronger than expected in January

A measure of manufacturing activity in the U.S. hit its highest level in 15 months for January, while the services sector outperformed as well, according to readings Wednesday from S&P Global.

The flash purchase managers index reading for manufacturing came in at 50.3, representing the percentage of companies seeing expansion. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones had been looking for 47.2.

On the services side, the flash PMI showed a reading of 52.9, a seven-month high and ahead of the 51.2 estimate.

There also was positive news on the inflation front: Companies increased selling prices at the slowest pace since May 2020.

—Jeff Cox

Wed, Jan 24 2024 9:33 AM EST

Stocks open higher

The three major indexes were up as Wednesday's trading session began.

The Dow was up more than 100 points, or about 0.3%, shortly after 9:30 a.m. ET. The S&P 500 added 0.6%. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 0.8%, helped by a rally in Netflix.

— Alex Harring

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