Stocks mixed as Biden taps Fed’s Powell for second term

Investors are preparing for a busy three days ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday.

U.S. stocks ended the session mixed after investors welcomed President Biden's re-nomination of Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell for a second term.  

The Dow Jones Industrial Average tacked on over 17 points or 0.05% while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite slipped 0.32% and 1.26%, respectively after touching fresh record highs early on in the session.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
I:DJI DOW JONES AVERAGES 34639.79 +617.75 +1.82%
SP500 S&P 500 4577.1 +64.06 +1.42%
I:COMP NASDAQ COMPOSITE INDEX 15381.319749 +127.27 +0.83%

Large-cap tech stocks weighed on the Nasdaq including Amazon, Microsoft and Google, while Apple maintained modest gains. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
AMZN AMAZON.COM, INC. 3,437.36 -6.36 -0.18%
GOOGL ALPHABET, INC. 2,859.32 +38.29 +1.36%
MSFT MICROSOFT CORP. 329.49 -0.59 -0.18%
AAPL APPLE, INC. 163.76 -1.01 -0.61%

With Powell at the helm for a second term, Biden also tapped Fed governor Lael Brainard as vice-chair. Investors took their nominations in stride as their prior working experience will likely represent continuity with monetary policy amid an ongoing effort to tackle inflation. 


Jerome Powell and Lael Brainard

Jerome Powell and Lael Brainard ( )

Oil rose 1.07% to $76.75-per-barrel level as reports suggested countries including China and perhaps the U.S. may tap the Strategic Petroleum Reserves with a decision expected as soon as Tuesday. The White House, telling FOX Business, "no decision has been made…The conversations are ongoing and we consider a range of tools for if and when action is needed."

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
USO UNITED STATES OIL FUND L.P. 48.29 +1.25 +2.66%

Existing home sales increased 0.8% in October to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 6.34 million, the fastest pace since January, and the Chicago Fed's national activity index rose to 0.76, up from -0.18 in September. Durable goods, GDP and inflation are among the reports slated for release on Tuesday and Wednesday. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
VG VONAGE HOLDINGS CORP. 20.66 0.00 0.00%

In deal news, Swedish telecom equipment maker Ericsson is buying U.S. cloud communications company Vonage in a $6.2 billion deal that will help it expand wireless services for business customers.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
RIVN RIVIAN AUTOMOTIVE INC. 110.77 -4.92 -4.25%
F FORD MOTOR CO. 19.87 +0.29 +1.48%
AMZN AMAZON.COM, INC. 3,437.36 -6.36 -0.18%

In auto news, shares of Rivian fell following news that the company has abandoned plans with Ford to develop electric vehicles together. Amazon remains a backer in the newly public electric vehicle maker. Meanwhile, shares of Tesla rose after CEO Elon Musk indicated the Model S Plaid could go on sale in China around March. The vehicle retails for around $129,000.

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
TSLA TESLA, INC. 1,084.60 -10.40 -0.95%

Retailers are also in focus with many Black Friday holiday sales already underway. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
TGT TARGET CORP. 245.50 +5.11 +2.13%
WMT WALMART, INC. 135.42 -1.64 -1.20%
M MACY'S, INC. 27.70 +0.52 +1.91%
KSS KOHL'S CORP. 49.90 +1.57 +3.25%

In earnings news, Zoom and retailer Urban Outfitters will report results after the bell. 

Ticker Security Last Change Change %
URBN URBAN OUTFITTERS, INC. 31.55 +0.93 +3.04%