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US Stocks Closed Mixed, Bond Yields Tumble on Heels of Slowing Labor Market Demand

Tuesday’s reading on job openings in October revealed a decline in labor market demand. Job openings slid to 8.73 million last month, down from 9.35 million in September and 10.47 million in the previous year. The number of hires and total separations remained relatively unchanged, indicating little change in quits (3.6 million) and layoffs and discharges (1.6 million).

Tech Sector Leads the Way

The tech sector was the biggest gainer of the day, with the Nasdaq Composite closing up about 0.3%. This positive performance contributed to the overall mixed results in the market. The benchmark S&P 500 hugged the flatline, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped more than 0.2%, or roughly 80 points.

Doubts About Rate Hikes and Soft Landing

Investor enthusiasm has been impacted by doubts surrounding the Federal Reserve’s plans to end rate hikes. The market is now looking to upcoming labor market data to determine if the US economy is heading for a “soft landing.”

Key Data to Watch

Investors will closely watch the upcoming release of ADP private payrolls numbers on Wednesday and Friday’s crucial monthly jobs report. These reports could potentially provide insights into any shifts in the Federal Reserve’s policy course.

Company Highlights

  • Tesla’s (TSLA) shares climbed about 1.5% following upbeat data from China. The electric vehicle maker is on track to achieve its best-ever quarterly deliveries in the country. Optimism is growing around Tesla’s controversial Cybertruck, which is expected to boost sales of other vehicle models within the company.
  • Shares of CVS climbed 3% after the healthcare giant announced plans to change its prescription drug pricing. The company aims to transition to a simpler pricing model with increased transparency. This move could potentially result in cost savings for consumers starting next year.
  • AT&T’s stock rose 4% on news of its network deal with Ericsson. The telecom giant plans to spend up to $14 billion on network equipment over a five-year deal with the Stockholm-based tech company. Ericsson shares also saw a 4.5% increase.
  • Charter Communications’ stock dropped more than 8% following comments from CFO Jessica Fischer at a UBS media conference. Fischer mentioned the possibility of negative internet net additions in Q4. This statement also led to drops in the shares of other cable companies, such as Comcast (down 4%) and Disney (down 1.5%).
  • Ferguson Plc (FERG) surged more than 4% after reporting Q1 revenue of $7.71 billion, beating expectations.
  • Nvidia (NVDA) rose over 1% as it announced plans to collaborate with Japanese research organizations, companies, and startups to establish AI factories in Japan.
  • Albemarle (ALB) declined over 3% after Piper Sandler downgraded the stock to underweight, citing a significant deterioration in the global lithium markets.
  • KeyCorp (KEY) dropped over 3% after revising its Q4 noninterest income estimate downward.
  • Procter & Gamble (PG) fell over 2% and led the Dow Jones Industrials’ losers after announcing expected charges of $2.0 billion to $2.5 billion from restructuring its business operations.
  • Designer Brands (DBI) experienced a steep decline of over 32% following lower-than-expected Q4 adjusted EPS and a downgrade in its 2024 EPS forecast.
  • Vornado Realty Trust (VNO) dropped over 3% after Moody’s Investors Service downgraded its senior unsecured debt rating.
  • Atlassian Corp (TEAM) decreased by over 2% amid signs of insider selling, as the Co-CEO and founder sold $1.6 million worth of shares.
  • SpringWorks Therapeutics (SWTX) declined over 8% after pricing an offering of 9.5 million shares below Monday’s closing price.
  • Take-Two Interactive Software (TTWO) fell more than 1% as investors were disappointed with the lack of a specific release date for its Grand Theft Auto VI game.

Bond Yields Tumble as October Job Openings Fall to 2-1/2 Year Low, Signaling Cooling Labor Market and Dovish Fed Policy

Bond yields took a tumble today in response to disappointing October job openings data, which fell more than expected to a 2-1/2 year low. This indicates a cooling labor market and has dovish implications for Federal Reserve policy. The 10-year Treasury note yield dropped to a three-month low of 4.159%, while the German bund yield fell to a six-month low of 2.242%, and the UK gilt yield hit a six-and-a-quarter-month low of 4.008%.

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Author

  • Phyllis Wangui

    Phyllis Wangui is a Financial Analyst and News Editor with qualifications in accounting and economics. She has over 20 years of banking and accounting experience, during which she has gained extensive knowledge of the forex, stock news, stock market, forex analysis, cryptos and foreign exchange industries. Phyllis is an avid commentator on these topics and loves to share her insights with others through financial publications and social media platforms.