Off The Wire
S&P 500, Dow near record highs on solid forecasts from healthcare firms
Oct 20 (Reuters) - The S&P 500 and the Dow inched closer to record highs on Wednesday after strong forecasts from healthcare companies Anthem and Abbott, while the Nasdaq lagged as technology stocks took a breather.
Analysts expect S&P 500 earnings to rise 33% from a year earlier, according to Refinitiv data, as they kept a close eye on growth outlook from companies faced with rising costs, labor shortages and supply chain disruptions.
"Earnings is boosting sentiment and we'll know more in two weeks... we're going to hear more about supply chain issues, wage growth and costs, etc. So far we haven't heard too much of that yet," said Paul Nolte, portfolio manager at Kingsview Investment Management in Chicago.
Netflix's (NFLX.O) global sensation "Squid Game" helped lure more customers than expected, the world's largest streaming service said as it predicted a packed lineup would further boost signups through the end of the year. read more
Its shares, however, fell 0.8% after hitting a record high earlier this month and gaining 18.2% so far this year.
"People are waiting to see what the large tech companies are going to report. That is probably the real reason we're seeing individual stocks responding more than the broader market," said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities in New York.
The CBOE volatility index (.VIX), also known as Wall Street's fear gauge, fell to its lowest level since Aug. 13.
At 12:02 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (.DJI) was up 163.79 points, or 0.46%, at 35,621.10, the S&P 500 (.SPX) was up 18.89 points, or 0.42%, at 4,538.52 and the Nasdaq Composite (.IXIC) was up 26.24 points, or 0.17%, at 15,155.33.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 2.66-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and by a 1.52-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
The S&P index recorded 55 new 52-week highs and no new low, while the Nasdaq recorded 77 new highs and 25 new lows.