U.S. stocks on Friday were showing slight gains, but the Dow was trading flat, with investors struggling to find fresh catalysts to push equity benchmarks to fresh records in a month and quarter that has proven better than expected.
What are stock indexes doing?
The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -0.07% fell 11 points, or less than 0.1%, to 22,370, while the S&P 500 SPX, +0.29% was up 8 points, or 0.3%, to 2,517. The benchmark index hit an all-time intraday high of 2,517.98.
The Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, +0.66% added 41 points, or 0.6%, to 6,495.85 — an intraday record.
For the week, the Dow is up 0.1%, the S&P is up 0.6% and the Nasdaq is up 1%. The standout of the final week of the quarter has been small-cap companies, however, with the Russell 2000 RUT, +0.30% up 2.9% thus far this week. On Friday, it rose 0.3% and at one point hit a record of 1,493.35.
What are market participants saying?
“The fundamental headlines in terms of market weakness don’t seem to be there right now, but valuations look a little stretched and investors may take a pause from the momentum we’ve been seeing,” said Sean Lynch, co-head, global equity strategy at Wells Fargo Investment Institute. He said the S&P 500 could retreat 5% or 6% through the rest of the year before rebounding in 2018.
“The initial move so far this year has been on pretty good earnings and pretty good fundamentals. However, a lot of stocks have had great runs and look very expensive now.” He singled out small-cap stocks as ones that “seem especially risky.”
What’s driving the market?
Traders are trying to find their footing after a week marked by hawkish comments from Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen and the long-awaited announcement on tax reform from President Donald Trump’s administration.
In the latest economic data, personal income rose 0.2% in August, while consumer spending was up 0.1%. Separately, the Chicago Purchasing Managers Index hit 65.2 in September, a jump from the August reading of 58.9.
What are investors watching out for today?
Philadelphia Fed President Patrick Harker said Friday he still expects the central bank to raise interest rates in December. His comments come a few days after Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen warned about being too slow in normalizing interest rates.
Which stocks are Wall Street following?
Amazon.com Inc.-owned Whole Foods AMZN, +0.85% said late Thursday that hackers tried to steal data from its credit-card-swiping machines. Amazon shares, however, were up 0.6%.
What are other assets doing?
The ICE Dollar Index DXY, +0.07% is set to break a six-month losing streak, up 1% for September.