U.S. equities opened slightly higher today, but then declined later in the afternoon after headlines about the Ukraine situation getting more intense. By afternoon markets recovered due to upbeat corporate earnings from Johnson & Johnson (NYSE: JNJ) and Coca-Cola Co. (NYSE: KO).
Johnson & Johnson rose 2.1 percent to $99.20, an all-time high. Coca-Cola Co didn’t post particularly impressive numbers, but they were good enough to beat pretty low expectations. Which brought back confidence among investors on the current stature of the market.
The Consumer Price Index in the U.S. rose 0.2% in March, beating expectations for a 0.1% result. Which means for the day to day consumer, it means prices for things go up.
The National Association of Home Builders Housing Market Index for April came in at 47 vs. the average economist’s estimate of 49. Which measures single-family house sales and readings below 50 mean more builders view market conditions as poor than favorable.
All of the 10 main S&P 500 groups advanced today, with utility and energy stocks rising 1.3 percent to lead the gains.
The Dow Jones Industrial Averagegained 0.55% to 16,262.56, while the S&P 500 was up 0.58% to 1,842.98. The Nasdaqlifted 0.29% to 4,034.16.
Gold dropped 27.20, or 2.1%, to settle at $1,300.30 an ounce. Oil declined$0.30 or 0.3 percent to close at $103.75 a barrel.