Technology stocks led the markets higher for a third straight session on Thursday as investors weighed in on a slew of mixed earnings and a surprise rate hike by the European Central Bank.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite gained 1.3%, while the benchmark S&P 500 rose 1%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 160 points, or 0.5%.
Amazon Stock (AMZN) rose for a seventh straight day, putting the e-commerce giant on pace for its longest winning streak since June 2020. Shares rose 13% over the seven-day period, but remain more 25% until the date of the year. Shares closed up 1.5%.
Meanwhile, United Airlines (WELL) shares fell 10% after the company posted lower-than-expected second-quarter results as inflationary pressures drove higher operating expenses and fuel costs that hurt its profits.
Another big development this morning came from the other side of the Atlantic, with the The ECB chooses to raise interest rates by 0.50%the first increase in central bank interest rates since 2011 and their biggest increase since 2000.
Investors had expected the ECB to raise rates by 0.25% in Thursday’s decision.
Following this move, the euro was slightly stronger against the dollar, trading above 1.025 after reaching parity with the greenback earlier this month.
In the U.S., investors remain focused on whether stocks can rise for a third straight day on Thursday after tech stocks rallied during Wednesday’s trading session.
Tesla (TSLA) was then focused on reporting earnings after the market close on Wednesday which beat analysts’ estimates but said automotive gross margins fell from the previous quarter. Shares were up about 2% before the bell.
United Airlines Boeing 777ER. Airplane at Fiumicino Leonardo da Vinci Airport. Fiumicino (Italy), July 14, 2022 (Photo by Massimo Insabato / Massimo Insabato Archive / Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images)
“Only earnings really matter; other issues are simply sidebars to that main narrative,” Nicholas Colas, co-founder of DataTrek Research, said in a note Thursday morning, adding that Fed policy, investor confidence and events can impact the system and understanding them can provide useful context.”Ultimately, however, stock prices fundamentally reflect the market’s best estimate of future sustainable business earnings.”
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Europe was also waiting the restart of the Nord Stream 1 gas pipeline – the largest single pipeline carrying gas from Russia to Germany – after the end of a scheduled maintenance break.
Domestically, economic data showed that the labor market continued to soften last week.
The last report on weekly presentations for unemployment insurance showed that 251,000 people filed for first-time unemployment last week, the most since November 2021.
Alexandra Semenova is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @alexandraandnyc