Stock Market Today: Dow notches third weekly win on optimism for peak Fed rates

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Stock Market Today: Dow notches third weekly win on optimism for peak Fed rates
Credit: © Reuters.

Investing.com -- The Dow ended flat Friday, notching its third-straight weekly win as stocks were buoyed by slowing inflation data earlier this week that fueled optimism that Federal Reserve rate hikes has peaked. 

At 16:00 ET (21:00 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average up 1 point, or 0.01%, while the S&P 500 was up 0.13% and the NASDAQ Composite was up 0.08%.

The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq are up more than 2% so far this week, while the DJIA is on pace for 2% rise.

Gap, Ross Stores lead retailers higher on earnings beat

Gap (NYSE: GPS ) delivered a earnings in Q3 that markedly beat analyst estimates and cautious guidance into the key holiday season quarter, sending its shares more 30% higher. 

The beat was driven by by a "significant acceleration in trend at the Old Navy brand and broad-based margin outperformance," Goldman Sachs said in a note, as it lifted its price target on the stock to $18 from $13 as tailwinds from lower promotion activity and commodity costs can continue into next year.

Ross Stores Inc (NASDAQ: ROST ), meanwhile, surged more 7% after delivering Q3 results that beat on both the top and bottom lines amid improving margins. 

BJs Wholesale Club Holdings (NYSE: BJ ) bucked the move higher in retailers falling 4% after delivering earnings that beat, but revenue was in-line with estimates.  

Treasury yield slip amid growing hopes Fed interest rate has peaked

Treasury yields resumed their slide, underpinning the broader market move higher, as optimism that the Fed interest rates have peaked continue to support investor sentiment following data earlier this week showing easing  inflation .

Additionally, weekly jobless claims rose while U.S. retail sales fell for the first time in seven months in October, pointing to slowing demand at the start of the fourth quarter.

On the housing front, October housing starts of 1.372 million were slightly ahead of expectations and higher than the prior month, while building permits of 1.487 million were also higher than expected. 

Microsoft slips after OpenAI CEO departs; Amazon cuts jobs in Alexa business

Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT ) fell more than 1% on news that OpenAI chief executive Sam Altman had departed after losing the board's confidence. 

Microsoft has a 49% stake in OpenAI, the creator of generative AI application ChatGPT. 

Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN ) said on Friday that it was cutting losses at its Alexa voice assistant business to focus its efforts on generative AI. 

Amazon closed more than 3% higher, bucking a fall in the broader tech sector, though some on Wall Street continue to talk up further gains in tech. 

"Heading into 2024 we believe the tech sector is set up for an acceleration of spending around cloud and AI spending that we believe is being significantly underestimated by the Street," Wedbush said in a note.

Energy stocks rise as oil rebounds but still falls to fourth weekly loss

Energy stocks rose more than 2% recouping losses from a day earlier, supported by a jump in oil prices, though that wasn't enough to prevent  a fourth straight negative week of decline amid signs of increased supplies and fears of worsening global demand. 

This week’s sharp decline was mainly triggered by a steep rise in U.S. crude inventories and production sustaining at record levels.

Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE: MRO ), APA Corporation (NASDAQ: APA ), ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP ) were among the biggest gainers.

(Liz Moyer, Peter Nurse and Oliver Gray contributed to this item.)

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