The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq closed out the trading day in positive territory on Monday, with gains held in check by falling industrials as investors braced for the first quarter of contracting earnings since 2016.
While the Dow ended the session lower, the S&P 500 extended its winning streak. The benchmark index has now seen eight straight days of gains for the first time since October 2017.
The first-quarter’s earnings season kicks off with earnings reports due out from Delta Airlines, JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo later in the week.
The consensus on the Street is that we will in the first quarter a year-on-year decline in S&P 500 earnings, the first since 2016. First quarter earnings for the companies making up the S&P 500 are seen contracting by 2.3 percent when compared to last year, according to Refinitiv data. Investors are also grappling with increasing signs of a global economic slowdown.
Boeing was the worst drag on the blue-chip Dow, falling 4.4 percent after the company said it would cut production of its 737 MAX aircraft in response to a worldwide grounding of the jets after the fatal Ethiopian Airlines crash on March 10.
Boeing’s woes also weighed on the company’s suppliers. Spirit AeroSystems and Triumph Group ended the session down 5.1 percent and 6.2 percent, respectively.
Of the 11 major sectors in the S&P 500, six closed in the black, led by energy which received a lift from rising crude prices.
Utilities and industrials were the biggest percentage losers in today’s trading activity.
General Electric was down 5.2% after JPMorgan downgraded the industrial conglomerate’s stock to “underweight” from “neutral.”
New Age Beverage rose 38.6% on news that it would expand its Marley tea and coffee brand within Walmart.
Snap gained 3.6 percent following RBC Capital Markets’ upgrade of the stock to “outperform.”
Histogenics was up 56.0% on news it would merge with privately-held Ocugen Inc.
Micron Technology fell 1.0 percent after Cowen downgraded the stock to “market perform,” citing expected margin pressures.
Approximately 6.15 billion shares changed hands on the major domestic equity exchanges, compared to the 7.28 billion share average over the past 20 trading days.