Stock Market Today: S&P 500 closes at record as unprecedented 5,000 level in focus

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Stock Market Today: S&P 500 closes at record as unprecedented 5,000 level in focus -- The S&P 500 rallied Wednesday closing at a record high and just shy of 5,000 level as bullish bets on stocks continued, with consumer stocks leading the charge following an earnings-led rally in Chipotle and Ford. 

By 16:00 ET (21:00 GMT), the benchmark S&P 500 had gained 0.4% to 4,995.22, just shy of the 5,000 mark. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite rose by 1%, and the blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average had advanced by 0.4%.

Chipotle Mexican Grill sizzles on earnings beat, Ford drives in upbeat guidance, Uber turns a profit for first time

Ford Motor Company (NYSE: F ) climbed 6% boosting consumer stocks after the automaker delivered annual guidance and fourth-quarter that topped analyst estimates. Ford guided $10-12B in 2024 earnings before interest and taxes, or EBIT, topping analyst estimates of $9.6B, though some on Wall Street flagged waning EV demand as a worry. 

Ford's guidance assumes a reversal of losses at Model E to $5 to 5.5B for 2024, RBC said in a Wednesday note, from $6.3B annualized in 2023, despite "2023 only experiencing worsening EV losses each quarter."

Uber Technologies (NYSE: UBER ) posted its first-ever annual operating profit on a net basis thanks in part to solid holiday demand for its ride-sharing and food delivery services. Shares closed marginally higher on the day.

Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc (NYSE: CMG ), up 7%, also reported quarterly results that beat on both the top and bottom lines, driven by an 8.1% rise in same-store sales as foot traffic rose 7.4% in the quarter. 

Snap crackles after revenue miss, New York Community Bank weakness continues

Snap (NYSE: SNAP ) shares plummeted 34% after the social media giant reported quarterly revenue of $1.36 billion that missed projections of $1.38 billion.

New York Community Bancorp (NYSE: NYCB ) fell 1% even as the regional bank tried to cool worries about its financial strength, saying it had a strong enough liquidity base to more than cover bank deposits that were not protected by U.S. government-backed insurance. The update comes after JPMorgan and BofA Securities downgraded the stock. 

Energy stocks lag broader market as oil prices rise pare gains

Energy stocks were flat as oil prices pared some gains following a much bigger than expected increase in U.S. weekly crude stockpiles. In the week ended Feb. 2, weekly U.S. crude inventories rose by 5.5 million barrels, well above the prior week's 1.2 million build and estimates for 1.7 million barrels. 

Schlumberger NV (NYSE: SLB ),Halliburton Company (NYSE: HAL ), and Hess Corporation (NYSE: HES ) were among the biggest losers in the energy sector.

Scott Kanowsky, Oliver Gray contributed to this report.

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