Stock markets bounced back this week amid encouraging macroeconomic cues that raised hopes of faster global recovery. For the first time, the benchmark S&P 500 index crossed the 4,000 mark, led by the technology sector.
The market was buoyed by the multi-billion-dollar development plan announced by the government mid-week, with a focus on infrastructure. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained about 0.5% and stayed above the psychologically significant 30,000 milestone.
Meanwhile, jobless claims stayed elevated last week as the pandemic continued to weigh on the labor market. The number of Americans filing for unemployment benefits rose unexpectedly to 719,000, despite the fast-paced vaccination drive and relaxation of COVID-related restrictions.
Adding yet another tech startup to its fold, Accenture bought Stockholm-based cloud technology firm Cygni early in the week for an undisclosed amount. Fantasy game operator DraftKings Inc. acquired sports broadcast network Vegas Sports Information to enhance its content capabilities. Used car retailer CarMax Inc. announced plans to buy the remaining stake in privately-held Edmunds.com Inc.
Elsewhere, China-based e-commerce marketplace JD.com revealed plans to spin off its AI and cloud businesses in a deal worth $2.4 billion. Meanwhile, Genome sequencing expert Illumina, Inc. suffered a setback after the Federal Trade Commission challenged its $7-billion takeover of liquid biopsy firm Grail. The market was abuzz with unconfirmed reports that data storage company Western Digital and chipmaker Micron are vying for Japanese SSD manufacturer Kioxia, in bids that would value the latter at $30 billion.
Walgreens Boots Alliance and Micron Technology published their second-quarter numbers on Wednesday, spicing up an otherwise uneventful week. The only other notable release was the fourth-quarter report of CarMax. With bank earnings around the corner, the market is currently getting ready to track the upcoming announcements.
The major events scheduled at the fag end of the current season include the third-quarter earnings release of Paychex – on April 6. The quarterly reports of Conagra Brands Inc. and Constellation Brands Inc. are expected on April 8.
Key Earnings to Watch
Monday: Duck Creek Technologies
Key US Economic Events
The following are notable companies which have reported their earnings last week. In case if you have missed catching up on their performance, click the respective links to skim through the transcripts to glean more insights.
If you want to listen to how management responds to analyst questions and the tone they use, you can head over to our YouTube channel to listen to conference calls on the go.