The S&P 500 ended the day with slight gains, but it closed well below its peak during the session. All three major indices on Wall Street saw weekly declines, primarily due to lingering concerns among investors regarding interest rates. Market participants anxiously awaited the release of upcoming US inflation data.
Investor apprehensions encompassed not only rising oil prices but also the forthcoming August Consumer Price Index (CPI), scheduled for release on September 13. This CPI report is expected to offer insights into the Federal Reserve’s potential policy decisions. Traders, however, seemed to hold the belief that the Federal Reserve would maintain the current interest rates following its meeting on September 20.
S&P 500 Closes with Modest Gains Amid Investor Concerns Over Interest Rates
Although benchmark US yields on 10-year notes remained relatively low on Friday, an increase in 2-year Treasury yields appeared to exert downward pressure on stocks. David Lefkowitz, Head of US Equities at UBS Global Wealth Management, noted that concerns about rising rates had been prevalent since the start of August.
“The sentiment around rate hikes has shifted in recent weeks. Questions have arisen about whether this poses a risk to economic growth and whether higher rates will lead to reduced consumer savings,” he expressed, highlighting concerns over elevated equity valuations.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose by 75.86 points, or 0.22%, closing at 34,576.59. The S&P 500 gained 6.35 points, or 0.14%, concluding at 4,457.49. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Composite increased by 12.69 points, or 0.09%, to 13,761.53.
This week’s trading was shortened due to the Labor Day holiday on Monday. The S&P 500 saw a decline of 1.3% for the week, while the Nasdaq declined by 1.9%, marking the end of their two-week winning streaks. The Dow also dipped by 0.8%.
Rising 2-Year Treasury Yields Impact Stock Market Performance
Apple (AAPL.O) witnessed a modest 0.3% gain on Friday, but it closed around $2 below its session high at $178.18. The stock of the tech giant had experienced significant declines in the preceding two sessions following news that Beijing had prohibited central government employees from using iPhones at work.
Despite a 2.9% decline over two sessions, the S&P 500 technology sector ended higher. Meanwhile, as oil prices climbed, 11 S&P 500 industrial sectors managed to finish in the green.
The Defensive Utilities sector experienced a daily increase of 0.96%, while the largest decline was observed in Real Estate, which fell by 0.63%.
In the S&P 500, 13 stocks reached new 52-week highs, whereas 17 stocks hit new lows. In the Nasdaq Composite, 36 stocks reached new highs, while 229 stocks recorded new lows.
Trading on American exchanges involved 8.89 billion shares, compared to the 20-session moving average of 9.96 billion shares.