The Nasdaq hit a record high on Monday ahead of upcoming earnings reports from the technology sector, while the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average lagged as Johnson & Johnson dragged down the major indexes.
After the market closed, shares of Google parent Alphabet, one of the high-flying “FANG” stocks, traded down 2.2 percent following the company’s quarterly report and dragged on Nasdaq 100 futures. Alphabet will be critical for supporting the run for the tech sector, which has outperformed all major groups this year.
Of the other FANG stocks, Netflix issued well-received results last week, while Amazon and Facebook are set to report later this week.
Tech and financials were the only two of the 11 major S&P sectors to finish in positive territory.
Johnson & Johnson ended the day down 1.7 percent, weighing on the S&P 500 and the Dow. J&J faces discounted competition to its big-selling rheumatoid arthritis drug.
The market’s run to record highs, including a 10.4 percent rise for the S&P 500 in 2017, has left equities relatively expensive and investors counting on earnings to justify the valuations. The S&P 500 is trading at around 17.7 times earnings estimates for the next 12 months, well above their long-term average of 15 times.
With more than one-fifth of the S&P 500 having reported results, earnings are now expected to have climbed 8.8 percent in the second quarter, up from a projection of an 8-percent rise at the start of the month, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.
This week alone, 190 S&P 500 companies are expected to report quarterly results.
In other earnings news, Halliburton fell 4.2 percent after the oilfield services provider warned about flattening growth in North American rig count.
Hasbro fell 9.4 percent after the toymaker’s quarterly results did not beat as expected.
Hibbett Sports fell 33.5 percent after the sporting goods retailer’s second-quarter sales warnings. The stock weighed on other sports retailers such as Dick’s Sporting, Foot Locker and Finish Line.
The Federal Reserve’s post-meeting statement due out on Wednesday might provided some direction as to the future path of interest rates.
Approximately 5.5 billion shares changed hands on the major domestic equity exchanges, a number that was below the 6.1 billion share daily average over the last 20 sessions.
Home Resales Down – Prices Up
According to a report released Monday morning by the National Association of Realtors, home resales fell more than expected in June, dropping 1.8 percent to a seasonally
adjusted annual rate of 5.52 million units as a dearth of properties pushed house prices to a record high. May’s sales pace was unrevised at 5.62 million units. Sales were up 0.7 percent from June 2016.
An acute shortage of properties has hampered monthly sales. The shortage of properties has led to bidding wars, which have culminated in house price increases outpacing wage gains.
Last month, the number of homes on the market slipped 0.5 percent to 1.96 million units. Supply was down 7.1 percent from a year ago. Housing inventory has dropped for 25 straight months on a year-on-year basis.
As a result, the median house price jumped 6.5 percent from a year ago to an all-time high of $263,800 in June. It was the 64th straight month of year-on-year price increases.
Homebuilders are struggling to plug the inventory gap amid rising costs of lumber. Homebuilding is also being constrained by shortages of labor and land.
A report last week showed housing starts rebounding 8.3 percent to a 1.22 million-unit pace in June, but still below their historic average of 1.5 million units, which according to some realtors would eliminate the housing shortage.
The two reports suggest that housing subtracted from gross domestic product in the second quarter after contributing almost half a percentage point to the economy’s annualized 1.4 percent growth pace in the first three months of the year.
Last month, sales fell in the Northeast, West and South regions, but rose in the Midwest. At June’s sales pace, it would take 4.3 months to clear the stock of houses on the market, up from 4.2 months in May. A six-month supply is viewed as a healthy balance between supply and demand.
Houses typically stayed on the market for 28 days last month, down from 34 days a year ago. Houses spent fewer days on the market in Seattle, Salt Lake City, San Jose, San Francisco and Denver.
Demand for housing is being driven by a tight labor market, marked by a 4.4 percent unemployment rate, which is boosting employment opportunities for young Americans. But the tight labor market has not spurred faster wage growth.
Annual wage growth has struggled to break above 2.5 percent, sidelining first-time home buyers, whose share of home sales has barely shifted. They accounted for 32 percent of transactions last month, well below the 40 percent share that economists and realtors say is needed for a robust housing market.
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