Stocks concluded higher on Friday, with the S&P 500 and Nasdaq closing out the session at record levels.

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq each rose about 0.5 %, while the Dow concluded just a tick above the flatline. U.S. stocks shook off earlier declines after monitoring a drop in overseas equities, after new data showed that UK gross domestic product (GDP) slumped by a record 9.9 % in 2020 as a virus-induced recession swept the nation.

Shares of Dow component Disney (DIS) reversed earlier gains to fall greater than 1 % and pull back from a record high, after the company posted a surprise quarterly profit and produced Disney+ streaming subscribers more than expected. Newly public organization Bumble (BMBL), which set about trading on the Nasdaq on Thursday, rose another seven % after jumping sixty three % in its public debut.

Over the past couple weeks, investors have absorbed a bevy of much stronger than expected earnings results, with company earnings rebounding much faster than expected regardless of the continuous pandemic. With over 80 % of businesses now having reported fourth quarter outcomes, S&P 500 earnings per share (EPS) have topped estimates by seventeen % for aggregate, and bounced back above pre COVID amounts, in accordance with an analysis by Credit Suisse analyst Jonathan Golub.

“Prompt and good government behavior mitigated the [virus related] injury, leading to outsized economic and earnings surprises,” Golub said. “The earnings recovery has been considerably more powerful than we might have dreamed when the pandemic for starters took hold.”

Stocks have continued to set fresh record highs against this backdrop, and as monetary and fiscal policy support stay robust. But as investors become comfortable with firming business functionality, businesses might need to top greater expectations to be rewarded. This can in turn put some pressure on the broader market in the near-term, as well as warrant more astute assessments of specific stocks, according to some strategists.

“It is no secret that S&P 500 performance has long been very strong over the past few calendar years, driven primarily via valuation expansion. Nonetheless, with the index P/E [price-to-earnings ratio] recently eclipsing its prior dot-com high, we believe that valuation multiples will begin to compress in the coming months,” BMO Capital Markets strategist Brian Belski wrote in a note Thursday. “According to our work, strong EPS growth is going to be necessary for the next leg greater. Thankfully, that is precisely what existing expectations are forecasting. But, we additionally found that these kinds of’ EPS-driven’ periods tend to become more tricky from an investment strategy standpoint.”

“We believe that the’ easy money days’ are over for the time being and investors will need to tighten up their aim by evaluating the merits of individual stocks, as opposed to chasing the momentum laden methods that have recently dominated the investment landscape,” he added.

4:00 p.m. ET: Stocks end higher, S&P 500 and Nasdaq reach record closing highs
Here’s exactly where the main stock indexes ended the session:

S&P 500 (GSPC): +18.55 points (+0.47 %) to 3,934.93

Dow (DJI): +27.44 points (+0.09 %) to 31,458.14

Nasdaq (IXIC): +69.70 points (+0.5 %) to 14,095.47

2:58 p.m. ET:’ Climate change’ would be the most-cited Biden policy on company earnings calls: FactSet
Fourth-quarter earnings season signifies the very first with President Joe Biden in the White House, bringing a brand new political backdrop for corporations to contemplate.

Biden’s policies around environmental protections and climate change have been the most-cited political issues brought up on corporate earnings calls so far, in accordance with an analysis from FactSet’s John Butters.

“In terms of government policies mentioned in conjunction with the Biden administration, climate change as well as energy policy (28), tax policy (20 COVID-19 and) policy (nineteen) have been cited or perhaps reviewed by the highest number of businesses through this point on time in 2021,” Butters wrote. “Of these twenty eight companies, 17 expressed support (or perhaps a willingness to work with) the Biden administration on policies to greatly reduce carbon and greenhouse gas emissions. These 17 corporations both discussed initiatives to minimize the own carbon of theirs as well as greenhouse gas emissions or items or services they give to assist clientele and customers reduce the carbon of theirs and greenhouse gas emissions.”

“However, 4 companies also expressed some concerns about the executive order starting a moratorium on new engine oil and gas leases on federal lands (and offshore),” he added.

The list of 28 firms discussing climate change and energy policy encompassed companies from an extensive array of industries, like JPMorgan Chase, United Airlines Holdings and 3M, alongside traditional oil majors as Chevron.

11:36 a.m. ET: Stocks combined, S&P 500 and Nasdaq turn positive
Here is where markets had been trading Friday intraday:

S&P 500 (GSPC): +7.87 points (+0.2 %) to 3,924.25

Dow (DJI): 8.77 points (-0.03 %) to 31,421.93

Nasdaq (IXIC): +28.15 points (+0.21 %) to 14,053.77

Crude (CL=F): +$0.65 (+1.12 %) to $58.89 a barrel

Gold (GC=F): +$0.20 (+0.01 %) to $1,827.00 per ounce

10-year Treasury (TNX): +2.7 bps to yield 1.185%

10:15 a.m. ET: Consumer sentiment suddenly plunges to a six-month low in February: U. Michigan
U.S. consumer sentiment slid to the lowest level since August in February, in accordance with the University of Michigan’s preliminary once a month survey, as Americans’ assessments of the path forward for the virus stricken economy unexpectedly grew a lot more grim.

The title consumer sentiment index dipped to 76.2 from 79.0 in January, sharply missing expectations for a rise to 80.9, based on Bloomberg consensus data.

The entire loss in February was “concentrated in the Expectation Index and among households with incomes under $75,000. Households with incomes in the bottom third reported considerable setbacks in the present finances of theirs, with fewer of these households mentioning latest income gains than anytime after 2014,” Richard Curtin chief economist for the university’s Surveys of Consumers, said in a statement.

“Presumably a new round of stimulus payments will lessen fiscal hardships with those with probably the lowest incomes. Much more shocking was the finding that customers, despite the expected passage of a grand stimulus bill, viewed prospects for the national economy less favorably in early February compared to last month,” he added.

9:30 a.m. ET: Stocks open lower, but speed toward posting weekly gains
Here is in which markets were trading just after the opening bell:

S&P 500 (GSPC): -8.31 points (-0.21 %) to 3,908.07

Dow (DJI): -19.64 (-0.06 %) to 31,411.06

Nasdaq (IXIC): 53.51 (+0.41 %) to 13,970.45

Crude (CL=F): 1dolar1 0.23 (0.39 %) to $58.01 a barrel

Gold (GC=F): -1dolar1 10.70 (0.59 %) to $1,816.10 per ounce

10-year Treasury (TNX): +3.2 bps to yield 1.19%

9:05 a.m. ET: Equity funds see highest weekly inflows ever as investors pile into tech stocks: Bank of America
Stock cash simply discovered the largest-ever week of theirs of inflows for the period ended February ten, with inflows totaling a record $58.1 billion, as reported by Bank of America. Investors pulled a total of $800 million out of gold and $10.6 billion out of cash during the week, the firm added.

Tech stocks in turn saw their very own record week of inflows at $5.4 billion. U.S. large cap stocks saw their second-largest week of inflows ever at $25.1 billion, and U.S. small cap inflows saw their third largest week at $5.6 billion.

Bank of America warned that frothiness is actually rising in markets, however, as investors continue piling into stocks amid low interest rates, as well as hopes of a solid recovery for corporate earnings and the economy. The firm’s proprietary “Bull as well as Bear Indicator” monitoring market sentiment rose to 7.7 from 7.5, nearing an 8.0 “sell” signal.

7:14 a.m. ET Friday: Stock futures point to a lower open
Below were the principle actions in markets, as of 7:16 a.m. ET Friday:

S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3,904.00, down 8.00 points or 0.2%

Dow futures (YM=F): 31,305.00, down 54 points or 0.17%

Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 13,711.25, printed 17.75 points or even 0.13%

Crude (CL=F): 1dolar1 0.43 (0.74 %) to $57.81 a barrel

Gold (GC=F): -1dolar1 9.50 (-0.52 %) to $1,817.30 per ounce

10-year Treasury (TNX): +0.5 bps to yield 1.163%

6:03 p.m. ET Thursday: Stock futures tick higher
Here is where markets were trading Thursday as overnight trading kicked off:

S&P 500 futures (ES=F): 3,904.50, printed 7.5 points or even 0.19%

Dow futures (YM=F): 31,327.00, down thirty two points or even 0.1%

Nasdaq futures (NQ=F): 13,703.5, printed 25.5 points or 0.19%