Dow Jones Industrial Average Up Big Today Ahead of FOMC Meeting Announcement

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average is on the move as investors digest the latest round of earnings from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL). The U.S. Federal Reserve plans to announce its latest decisions on interest rates and the state of the U.S. economy.

The market experienced a wild December after the Fed hosted its most recent meeting. Look for Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s press conference this afternoon and whether he says they will continue to be “patient” on rates.

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Pay close attention to utility companies across the Midwest as they try to keep up with power demand. At sunrise this morning, temperatures in Chicago hit -19 and will continue to fall during the day. But it gets worse. The ReelFeel temperature, factoring in wind chill, will hit -51 degrees in the Windy City.

Here are the numbers from Tuesday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:

Index Previous Close Point Change Percentage Change
Dow Jones 24,579.96 51.74 0.21%
Nasdaq 7,028.29 -57.39 -0.81%
S&P 500 2,640.00 -3.85 -0.15%

Now here’s a closer look at today’s most important market events and stocks, plus Wednesday’s economic calendar.

The Top Stock Market Stories for Wednesday

  • Shares of Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) rallied more than 6% after the tech giant barely beat earnings-per-share (EPS) and revenue expectations. The firm reported EPS of $4.18, topping Wall Street projections by a penny. In addition, the firm reported revenue of $84.31 billion, a figure that topped expectations of $83.97 billion. That said, the firm reported weaker iPhone sales and projected second-quarter guidance in line with forecasts. The firm also has a whopping $245 billion in cash, a figure that is a 3% jump from last quarter.
  • Chinese and U.S. trade officials will meet in Washington today to start the latest round of trade discussions. The ongoing trade dispute between the world’s largest two economies has negatively impacted equity markets and pounded the Chinese economy. The two countries had announced a truce during a negotiation window. However, tensions are rising after the United States requested the extradition of Huawei’s CFO Meng Wanzhou on charges that she helped the Chinese tech giant avoid sanctions on Iran. Investors are also concerned about the steep disagreements on technology and intellectual property.
  • Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) leads a busy day of earnings reports for tech giants today. But that’s not the big news for the firm. The company is under fire for paying teenagers to download and use the “Facebook Research” application, which tracks all of their data and movement on smartphones. The application bypasses Apple’s security policies. This is the latest security setback for a company already under fire on customer data practices.
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Stocks to Watch Today: BA, BABA, AMD

  • Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA) reported earnings before the bell this morning. The firm crushed quarterly expectations before the bell, earning $5.48 per share, well above expectations of $4.78. The company reported record revenue, topping $100 billion for the first time ever. The company hiked its EPS and revenue expectations for 2019 and said it expects deliveries to come in between 895 and 905 planes.
  • Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (NYSE: BABA) shares added 2.3% after the Chinese e-commerce giant reported earnings before the bell. The company reported the weakest quarterly revenue growth in three years, a sign of a slowing Chinese economy and the ongoing weakness in trade between the United States and China. The lackluster report raised concerns for China due to its typically strong sales during the nation’s “Singles’ Day” and U.S. sales during Black Friday and Cyber Monday.
  • Shares of Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (NYSE: AMD) surged more than 9% in pre-market hours after the company reported earnings before the bell. Although the chip manufacturer fell short of revenue expectations, the company matched EPS expectations. Shares rallied despite news that the firm issued weak guidance for the first quarter (at $1.25 billion). That figure is well below consensus expectations of $1.47 billion.
  • Today, look for more earnings reports from Tesla Inc. (NASDAQ: TSLA), Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT), Visa Inc. (NYSE: V), PayPal Inc. (NASDAQ: PYPL), Wynn Resorts Ltd. (NASDAQ: WYNN), AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), QUALCOMM Inc. (NASDAQ: QCOM), McDonald’s Corp. (NYSE: MCD), Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd. (NYSE: RCL), Cree Inc. (NASDAQ: CREE), and United States Steel Corp. (NYSE: X).

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