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Market Snapshot: U.S. stocks drift lower as investors weigh earnings from tech and other corporate heavyweights

U.S. stocks drifted lower early Wednesday, in the wake of another record-setting session, as investors absorbed a huge batch of earnings from technology heavyweights, including Alphabet Inc. and Microsoft, as well as McDonald’s Corp., Boeing Co. and others.

Tensions between Washington and Beijing were also in focus after U.S. regulators banned China Telecom Corp. from operating in the U.S.

How are stock-index futures trading?

The Dow Jones Industrial Average
DJIA,
-0.21%

fell 50.44 points, or 0.1%, to 35,706.44.

The S&P 500
SPX,
-0.01%

was off 3.54 points, or 0.1%, at 4,571.25.

The Nasdaq Composite
COMP,
+0.40%

was up 39.74 points, or 0.3%, at 15,275.46.

On Tuesday, the Dow and S&P 500 both finished at records, while Nasdaq Composite finished less than 1% below its record close from Sept. 7.

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What’s driving the market?

Investors have pushed stocks higher, and inflation and economic concerns to the side, amid a mostly strong third-quarter earnings reporting season.

“So far, nearly 30% of the S&P 500 has reported earnings. Eighty percent of the companies that have issued quarterly updates have surpassed profits projections, while eighty percent have beaten sales forecasts. Strong performances have been critical in propelling the major indexes to new highs,” said Naeem Aslam, chief market analyst at AvaTrade, in a note to clients.

Late Tuesday a lineup of corporate results included several big tech companies with Microsoft Corp.
MSFT,
+4.18%

reporting quarterly earnings that shot over $20 billion for the first time. Shares rose over 2.6%.

Twitter Inc. TWTR share were down 5.9%, after the microblogging social-media group added users, and reported a revenue rise. Google parent Alphabet Inc. GOOGL reported earnings that topped estimates amid resilient advertising sales. Its shares rose 0.6%.

Read: Apple’s ‘ad-mageddon’ is affecting Snap, Facebook, Google and Twitter differently

Data showed U.S. durable goods orders fell 0.4% in October, compared with expectations for a 1% decline. “Core” orders rose by 0.8%. Separately, the government said the trade deficit widened in September.

Elsewhere, Sino-U.S. tensions were in focus after the Federal Communications Commission gave China Telecom
728,
-0.73%

60 days to leave the U.S. market. Regulators cited a potential national security threat from the company, such as the disruption of U.S. communications, amid rising tensions between the countries.

Which companies are in focus?

Boeing BA shares fell 0.4%, after the aerospace and defense company reporting a big loss and revenue misses amid weakness in the commercial airplanes and defense, space and security businesses, while free cash flow was a lot less negative than projected.

McDonald’s MCD shares rose 2% after the fast-food giant reported third-quarter earnings and sales that beat expectations.

Shares of Coca-Cola Co. KO edged up 0.1%, after the beverage giant reported third-quarter profit and revenue that rose topped expectations, with all geographic regions seeing revenue and unit case volume growth. It also raised its full-year earnings growth view.

General Motors Co. GM shares were up 0.2% after the auto maker blew past profit estimates for the third quarter and offered above-consensus guidance for the full year, offsetting a revenue miss.

Shares of Robinhood Markets Inc.
HOOD,
-9.38%

fell sharply in after-hours trade but were up 1.3% in early action, after the online trading platform reported a wider quarterly loss and lower-than-expected sales amid weak crypto-related revenue.

Shares of Texas Instruments Inc.
TXN,
-5.67%

rose 0.8%, after the chip maker’s third-quarter results met Wall Street forecasts. It also noted “hot spots” of components shortages.

Visa Inc.
V,
-4.59%

shares fell 5% after the credit-card company topped earnings expectations but disappointed some over its revenue outlook.

What are other markets doing?

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note
TMUBMUSD10Y,
1.573%

fell 4.1 basis points to 1.577%. Yields and debt prices move in opposite directions.

The ICE U.S. Dollar Index
DXY,
-0.18%
,
a measure of the currency against a basket of six major rivals, was off 0.1%.

Oil futures pulled back from multiyear highs, with the U.S. benchmark
CL00,
-1.02%

down 1.6% at $83.30 a barrel. Gold futures
GC00,
-0.23%

edged up 0.2% to $1,796.10 an ounce.

In European equities, the Stoxx Europe 600
SXXP,
-0.35%

fell 0.3% and London’s FTSE 100
UKX,
-0.24%

shed 0.2%.

The Shanghai Composite
SHCOMP,
-0.98%

fell 1%, while the Hang Seng Index
HSI,
-1.57%

dropped 1.6% in Hong Kong, while Japan’s Nikkei 225
NIK,
-0.03%

saw a marginal decline.

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