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Stock market news live updates: Dow falls for a third straight day while tech advance pushes Nasdaq higher

Emily McCormick
·Reporter
·11 min read

Stocks were mixed Tuesday after a selloff on Wall Street pushed the Dow and S&P 500 to their biggest one-day drops in more than a month.

[Click here to read what’s moving markets heading into Wednesday, October 28]

The Dow fell as components 3M and Caterpillar fell after reporting earnings results. A day earlier, the index dropped 650 points, or 2.3%, for its worst single-session decline since the beginning of September. The S&P 500 fell 1.9% for its worst drop since September 23, and the Nasdaq fell 1.6% for its worst decline in a week.

Airline, cruise line and resort stocks also extended losses after enduring a steep drop a day earlier, as traders fled from names most exposed to disruptions that could occur if a jump in virus cases further stems discretionary travel. Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) shares sank after the company announced it agreed to purchase peer chipmaker Xilinx (XLNX) in a $35 billion all-stock deal, confirming rumors from earlier this month. Shares of Xilinx jumped more than 10%.

Concerns over elevated new case counts in the U.S. and abroad contributed heavily to traders’ jitters. Domestically, cases hit a record high of more than 80,000 on Friday and held above that threshold again on Saturday. Dr. Anthony Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert, said during Yahoo Finance’s All Markets Summit on Monday that the U.S. is still in the “original first wave” of the pandemic, given that cases never stabilized to a more manageable level to begin with. Overseas, the Czech Republic on Monday joined France, Spain and Italy in imposing an evening curfew to try and curb the spread of the coronavirus, with cases again surging across Europe.

The virus resurgence compounded with ongoing uncertainty over the U.S. election results next week and discussions over another significant coronavirus relief package out of Washington.

To the latter point, negotiations took place again between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin Monday afternoon, although the time to pass a bill before Nov. 3 continues to narrow. Pelosi’s spokesperson Drew Hammill said on Twitter after their meeting, “The Speaker remains optimistic that an agreement can be reached before the election,” while adding that “progress depends on Leader [Mitch] McConnell agreeing to bipartisan, comprehensive legislation.” U.S. senators left Washington for a break ahead of the election Monday, however, leaving chances of a pre-election stimulus package incredibly low.

Some analysts noted that the upbeat comments from lawmakers about the timing of a relief bill has rung hallow to investors in recent days, given that stimulus negotiations have gone on for months now without major progress.

“Equity investors proved that talk is cheap when it comes to delivering on additional stimulus as stocks resumed their decline this week on the lack of agreement on a comprehensive stimulus package,” Charlie Ripley, senior investment strategist for Allianz Investment Management, said in an email Monday. “We think the ability to get stimulus done is fading each day as we get closer to the U.S. election, but are reminded that volatility is expected to stay as uncertainties surrounding the path of the virus and the outcome of the election continue to weigh on investors’ minds.”

4:04 p.m. ET: Dow falls for a third straight day as Caterpillar, 3M drop after earnings; Tech advance pushes Nasdaq higher

Here were the main moves in markets as of 4:04 p.m. ET:

  • S&P 500 (^GSPC): -10.29 (-0.30%) to 3,390.68

  • Dow (^DJI): -222.19 (-0.80%) to 27,463.19

  • Nasdaq (^IXIC): +72.41 (+0.64%) to 11,431.35

  • Crude (CL=F): +$0.92 (+2.39%) to $39.48 a barrel

  • Gold (GC=F): +$4.30 (+0.23%) to $1,910.00 per ounce

  • 10-year Treasury (^TNX): -2.3 bps to yield 0.7780%

12:37 p.m. ET: Stocks mixed, Dow drops 100+ points while Nasdaq outperforms

The three major indices were mixed on Tuesday, with Big Tech shares outperforming ahead of their earnings results this week and after AMD announced a major tie-up with Xilinx. The industrials, financials and energy sectors dragged the S&P 500 lower, however, and the Dow shed more than 100 points.

Here’s where markets were trading shortly after 12:30 p.m. in New York:

  • S&P 500 (^GSPC): -3.25 points (-0.1%) to 3,397.72

  • Dow (^DJI): -125.69 points (-0.45%) to 27,559.69

  • Nasdaq (^IXIC): +59.78 points (+0.51%) to 11,417.08

  • Crude (CL=F): +$1.04 (+2.7%) to $39.60 a barrel

  • Gold (GC=F): +$4.50 (+0.24%) to $1,910.20 per ounce

  • 10-year Treasury (^TNX): -1.7 bps to yield 0.786%

10:05 a.m. ET: Consumer confidence unexpectedly slipped in October: Conference Board

The Conference Board’s October consumer confidence index posted a surprise decline in October, with the headline figure coming in at 100.9 from 101.3 in September. Consensus economists were looking for the index to tick up to 102.0.

A subindex tracking consumers’ assessments of current situations rose to 104.6 from 98.9. However, this was more than offset by a drop in consumers’ expectations for future conditions, with the subindex tracking this falling to 98.4 from 102.9 in September.

“"Consumers' assessment of current conditions improved while expectations declined, driven primarily by a softening in the short-term outlook for jobs,” Lynn Franco, senior director of economic indicators at The Conference Board, said in a statement. “There is little to suggest that consumers foresee the economy gaining momentum in the final months of 2020, especially with COVID-19 cases on the rise and unemployment still high.”

9:35 a.m. ET: Stocks decline, paring some gains from the overnight session

Here were the main moves in markets, as of 9:35 a.m. ET:

  • S&P 500 (^GSPC): -1.16 points (-0.03%) to 3,399.81

  • Dow (^DJI): -47.71 points (-0.17%) to 27,637.67

  • Nasdaq (^IXIC): +32.97 points (+0.29%) to 11,396.34

  • Crude (CL=F): +$0.25 (+0.65%) to $38.81 a barrel

  • Gold (GC=F): +$0.30 (+0.02%) to $1,906.00 per ounce

  • 10-year Treasury (^TNX): -1.7 bps to yield 0.786%

9:05 a.m. ET: Home-price growth accelerated in August as pandemic-era home-buying surge pushes up prices

Home price growth accelerated to 5.71% in August over last year after a 4.78% increase in July, according to S&P CoreLogic’s Case-Shiller home price index. This marked the second straight month of accelerations in home price growth, after a dip earlier on during the pandemic.

The firm’s 20-city composite home price index, which measures home price changes in 20 of the largest U.S. markets, rose 5.2% over last year, outpacing the 4.2% increase consensus economists were expecting. In July, the 20-city composite index increased by about 4.1% year-over-year.

8:32 a.m. ET: Durable goods orders surge in September, topping expectations

Orders for goods intended to last three years or more jumped by a far greater margin than expected in September, the Commerce Department said in its preliminary monthly report Tuesday, pointing to a stronger recovery for the manufacturing sector.

Durable goods orders rose 1.9% in September after a revised 0.4% increase in August, marking a fifth straight monthly gain. Consensus economists expected durable goods orders to increase 0.5% for the month. Excluding transportation orders, durable goods still rose 0.8% on the month, or better than the 0.4% rise expected.

Non-defense capital goods orders, excluding aircraft, increased 1.0% after a 2.1% rise in August, topping expectations for a tick higher of just 0.5%. These so-called “core” capital goods orders are viewed as a proxy for business spending plans.

7:54 a.m. ET: JetBlue tops 3Q estimates, though sales still drop 76% over last year

JetBlue (JBLU), another airline hard-hit by the pandemic and decline in travel, on Tuesday posted third-quarter sales and earnings that were better than feared. Operating revenue of $492 million dropped 76% over last year, but still topped estimates for about $463 million. Its adjusted loss per share of $1.75 was narrower than the loss of $1.90 a share expected.

The company’s third-quarter cash burn averaged $6.1 million per day, or better than the company’s previously expected range of as much as $9 million a day. Its fourth-quarter average daily cash burn will likely be between $4 million and $6 million, the company said.

Overall sales will likely decline by about 65% in the fourth quarter, JetBlue added. And its capacity will likely be down 45%, following a 58% drop in capacity during the third quarter.

7:49 a.m. ET: 3M sales grow 5% over last year, earnings top estimates as health-care products, consumer product sales jump

3M (MMM) returned to quarterly growth after posting shrinking sales in the second quarter, as demand for the company’s medical equipment being used against COVID-19 jumped.

Health-care sales jumped nearly 26% to $2.2 billion during the quarter, led by purification and medical solutions sales. Safety and industrial sales increased 6.9% to $3 billion, with growth in personal safety and auto aftermarket supplies sales contributing to the rise. Consumer sales were up nearly 6% to $1.4 billion, with home-care and home-improvement revenue offsetting a drop in office supplies as people continue to work from home.

Transportation and electronics was the one major business group that still saw a sales decline during the third quarter, with these dropping more than 7% to $2.3 billion on account of a drop in aerospace and transportation safety demand.

Overall, revenue grew nearly 5% over last year to $8.4 billion. Adjusted earnings of $2.43 per share beat estimates for $2.26. October sales will likely be flat to up low-single digits, 3M said, while declining to provide full-year guidance.

7:30 a.m. ET: Caterpillar stems sales decline as demand trends improve, sales to China pick up

Caterpillar (CAT) on Tuesday posted third-quarter results that topped consensus expectations, with adjusted earnings of $1.34 per share on revenue of $9.88 billion each ahead of estimates for $1.13 per share on revenue of $9.19 billion. That represented a top-line decline of 23% over last year, which improved from the 35% drop reported for the second quarter this year. Earnings, however, were still down by half over last year.

While a drop in end-user demand over last year contributed to the ongoing declines, Caterpillar said Tuesday it expects “less of a decline in end-user demand” in the fourth quarter than in the third. The company also expects dealers to reduce their inventories by about $700 million in the fourth quarter and by $2.5 billion for the full year, or about in-line with its second-quarter guidance for inventories to fall by greater than $2 billion for all of 2020.

Construction industries, Caterpillar’s largest sales category, saw revenue drop 23% over last year to $4.05 billion. Every geography reported declines except for Asia Pacific, where sales grew “primarily driven by China demand, which was partially offset by lower sales in the rest of the region,” Caterpillar said.

7:15 a.m. ET Tuesday: Dow futures add 100+ points as equities look to recover some losses

Here were the main moves in markets, as of 7:15 a.m. ET:

  • S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3,408.00, up 14.5 points or 0.43%

  • Dow futures (YM=F): 27,685.00, up 104 points or 0.38%

  • Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 11,547.25, up 55 points or 0.48%

  • Crude (CL=F): +$.0.44 (+1.14%) to $39.00 a barrel

  • Gold (GC=F): -$2.90 (-0.15%) to $1,902.80 per ounce

  • 10-year Treasury (^TNX): -0.4 bps to yield 0.799%

6:14 p.m. ET Monday: Stocks tick up after selloff

Here were the main moves in markets, as of 6:14 p.m. ET:

  • S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3,397.6, up 4 points or 0.12%

  • Dow futures (YM=F): 27,603.00, up 22 points or 0.08%

  • Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 11,508.25, up 16 points or 0.14%

A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange October 10, 2008.   REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton (UNITED STATES)
A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange October 10, 2008. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton (UNITED STATES)

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