Stocks finish mixed with Fed meeting on tap

ConocoPhillips agreed to buy Royal Dutch Shell’s Permian Basin assets for $9.5B

U.S. stock indexes finished mixed on Tuesday with both the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 index slipping into negative territory just before the closing bell as investors took a cautious approach ahead of Wednesday's Fed meeting. 

The Dow Jones fell 47 points, or 0.14%, while the S&P 500 index lost 0.08% and the Nasdaq Composite index advanced 0.22%. 

HOMEBUILDERS SOUND ALARM ON SUPPLY CHAIN ISSUES

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
I:DJI DOW JONES AVERAGES 35457.31 +198.70 +0.56%
SP500 S&P 500 4519.63 +33.17 +0.74%
I:COMP NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX 15129.089569 +107.28 +0.71%

The choppy trade came a day after the Dow fell by the most in two months amid worries over the health of China’s real estate sector and uncertainty over Fed policy. Both the S&P and the Nasdaq suffered their biggest losses since May.

Investors continue to monitor whether Beijing will step in to save embattled Chinese property developer Evergrande. A report from S&P Global Ratings said such action would only occur "if there is a far-reaching contagion causing multiple major developers to fail and posing systemic risks to the economy."

Closer to home, the Federal Reserve kicked off its two-day policy meeting. Investors will be paying close attention to Wednesday’s decision, which may lay out the path for the central bank to begin tapering its asset purchases. 

In stocks, industrials, including Caterpillar Inc. and Freeport-McMoRan, were in focus following Monday's slide.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
CAT CATERPILLAR, INC. 201.14 +2.96 +1.49%
FCX FREEPORT-MCMORAN, INC. 38.85 +0.31 +0.80%

Johnson & Johnson said the second shot of its COVID-19 vaccine given about two months after the first improved its effectiveness to 94% from 70%. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
JNJ JOHNSON & JOHNSON 163.87 +3.75 +2.34%

In deals, U.S. Bancorp agreed to buy the personal banking division of Japanese lender MUFG Union Bank’s U.S. business for $8 billion in cash and stock. The deal is expected to close by the end of June. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
USB U.S. BANCORP 61.35 +0.77 +1.27%

ConocoPhillips said it will buy Royal Dutch Shell’s assets in the Permian Basin for $9.5 billion cash. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
COP CONOCOPHILLIPS 75.32 +0.82 +1.10%
RDS.A ROYAL DUTCH SHELL PLC 49.29 +0.69 +1.42%

In earnings, Lennar Corp. reported quarterly results that fell short of Wall Street estimates due to supply chain disruptions caused by COVID-19. The homebuilder guided current-quarter deliveries below analyst expectations. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
LEN LENNAR CORP. 99.86 -0.27 -0.27%

Walt Disney CEO Bob Capek said during a Goldman Sachs conference that his company's streaming subscribers would increase by "low single-digit millions," below what was previously expected. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
DIS THE WALT DISNEY CO. 171.18 +0.04 +0.02%

Uber Inc. raised its gross bookings forecast for the current quarter and said it could turn a profit earlier than previously expected. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
UBER UBER TECHNOLOGIES, INC. 47.05 -0.02 -0.04%

In commodities, West Texas Intermediate crude oil jumped 27 cents to $70.56 a barrel and gold ticked up $14.20 to $1,776 an ounce. 

Overseas markets were mostly higher. 

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European bourses rallied across the board with France’s CAC 40 rising 1.5%, Germany’s DAX 30 climbing 1.43% and Britain’s FTSE 100 up 1.12%. 

In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 plunged 2.17% and Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index gained 0.51%. China’s Shanghai Composite remained closed for holiday.