Stocks fell on Wednesday as investors weighed the latest batch of corporate earnings as market participants continued to digest Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell's comments on inflation in the previous session. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell over 200 points, while the S&P 500 Index and Nasdaq Composite declined over 1% and 1.6%, respectively.
Here's how the market settled on Wednesday:
S&P 500 Index (SPY ): -1.11% or -46.14 points to 4,117.86
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DIA ): -0.61% or -207.68 points to 33,949.01
Nasdaq Composite Index (QQQ ): -1.68% or -203.27 points to 11,910.52
In the spotlight on Wednesday, shares of Google-parent Alphabet (GOOGL ) fell over 7% after the company unveiled a new bath of AI-powered features for its Search, Maps, and Lens apps. The announcement came a day after Microsoft (MSFT ) revealed a new version of its Bing search engine that includes features from OpenAI's ChatGPT language AI technology.
In earnings news, Chipotle (CMG ) shares fell nearly 5% after the fast-casual food chain missed expectations on both top and bottom lines. Lumen Technologies (LUMN ) sunk over 20% after the telecom reported a quarterly loss of $3.1 billion and issued light guidance for the year.
Uber Technologies (UBER ) rose over 5% after delivering strong fourth-quarter earnings. CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in a statement that the rideshare company had its "strongest quarter ever" in what he considers the company's "strongest year."
Elsewhere for stocks, Ebay (EBAY ) announced plans to lay off 500 employees, or about 4% of its workforce, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Tuesday. CEO Jamie Iannone said in a memo to employees that the layoffs will boost the company's ability to bring better experiences for its customers, CNBC reports.
In economic news, U.S. wholesale inventories rose by 0.1% in December from November's revised reading, according to a report from the Commerce Department on Wednesday, marking the lowest month-to-month change since July 2020.
Wednesday's moves followed the latest comments from Powell that sparked an afternoon rally on Tuesday as the Fed Chief said that inflation has shown some signs of easing.
"The disinflationary process, the process of getting inflation down, has begun and it's begun in the goods sector, which is about a quarter of our economy," Powell said during an event in Washington, D.C. "But it has a long way to go. These are the very early stages."
Looking ahead, investors will focus on earnings from Disney (DIS ) and Mattel (MAT ) after closing bell for more clues on how consumers are responding to persistently high inflation.