US stocks closed mixed as traders weigh Fed rate-cut guidance and corporate earnings

Feb 7, 2024
  • Stocks were mixed as Fed officials continued to speak cautiously about rate cuts.
  • Fed presidents Neel Kashkari and Loretta Mester didn’t see an imminent need to pivot policy.
  • Strong earnings drove Palantir Technologies and Spotify higher in markets.

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US stocks remained mixed through Tuesday, as investors continued working out when to expect interest rate cuts. 

Weekend comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell spurred a market sell-off on Monday after he indicated that the central bank was not yet ready to loosen monetary policy.

His cautious remarks were echoed on Tuesday by Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester, who expects officials to gain more confidence about pivoting later in the year. Neel Kashkari, her Minneapolis counterpart, also noted that the Fed’s inflation target has not been reached yet.

Recent economic data, such as Monday’s strong ISM reading, is delaying the need for the Fed to cut rates soon. Last week’s stellar jobs report also dampened hopes for an imminent loosening of policy. 

Meanwhile, 10-year Treasury yields slumped over seven basis points as investors readied for a $42 billion auction on Wednesday.

Earnings also remained a core focus for investors. Palantir Technologies soared 21% following its big fourth-quarter earnings beat, while strong earnings also pushed Spotify shares up nearly 4%.  

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 4:00 p.m. closing bell on Tuesday: 

Here’s what else happened today: 

In commodities, bonds, and crypto: 

  • West Texas Intermediate crude oil gained 0.99% to $73.49 a barrel. Brent crude, the international benchmark, rose 0.90% to $78.69 a barrel. 
  • Gold climbed 0.46% to $2,052.30 per ounce. 
  • The 10-year Treasury yield dropped over seven basis points to 4.092%.
  • Bitcoin rose 1.78% to $43,140.10. 

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