Stocks fell into the red in afternoon trading as investors renewed the market rotation out of tech names, pulling down major averages into the red in the session's final minutes. Both the Dow and the S&P 500 gave up earlier gains, while the tech-heavy Nasdaq underperformed as FAANG names plunged lower.
On Wednesday, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen appeared before U.S. lawmakers for a second day of testimony, this time before the Senate Banking Committee. Both Powell and Yellen expressed confidence in the current state of the U.S. economy, with Powell adding that he expects the economy to see more growth in 2021 as it continues to recover from the coronavirus pandemic.
Here's how the market settled on Wednesday:
S&P 500 Index (SPY ): -0.55% or -21.38 points to 3,889.14
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DIA ): -0.01% or -3.09 points to 32,420.06
Nasdaq Composite Index (QQQ ): -2.01% or -265.81 points to 12,961.89
For Stocks, Cruise stocks--Carnival (CCL ), Norwegian (NCLH ) and Royal Caribbean (RCL )--sunk following reports that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will extend its no-sail order through Nov. 1. Intel (INTC ) shares rose after the company announced it was investing $20 billion into building its own in-house chip manufacturing operations. GameStop (GME ) shares fell nearly 34% after the video game retailer failed to give investors enough details about its turnaround plan and disclosed in a filing that it is considering selling additional equity shares.
For Sector Performance, sectors ended Wednesday's session mixed, with Energy (XLE ) leading gains, and Information Technology (XLK ), Consumer Discretionary (XLY ) and Communication Services (XLC ) leading losses.
For Commodities and Currency, the U.S. Dollar (UUP ) rose higher on Wednesday after U.S. Treasury yields eased and Powell and Yellen injected more confidence into the U.S. economic recovery. The dollar index increased to 92.99 against six other global currencies. Gold (GLD ) prices gained on Wednesday, despite the strengthening dollar, as Powell reiterated that the central bank will keep interest rates near zero. Spot gold increased 0.4% to $1,733.39 per ounce, while U.S. gold settled 0.5% higher at $1,733.20 per ounce. Crude oil futures jumped on Wednesday, almost erasing the previous session's 6% losses, after a ship ran aground in the Suez Canal, threatening trade in the region. International benchmark Brent Crude (BNO ) rose 6% higher at $64.41 per barrel, while domestic index West Texas Intermediate (USO ) settled up 5.9% at $61.18 each.
For Thursday, investors will turn their attention to fresh data on weekly unemployment claims.