Stock Market Today: Dow Ekes Out Gain as Consumer Stocks Shine, But Tech Fades

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Stock Market Today: Dow Ekes Out Gain as Consumer Stocks Shine, But Tech Fades

By Yasin Ebrahim -- The Dow eked out a gain Monday, led by consumer stocks on optimism about easing Covid-19 restrictions in China, though wavering in tech stocks kept a lid on gains in the broader market. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 16 points, the Nasdaq added 0.4%, and the S&P 500 gained 0.3%.

Tech flirted between gains and losses in choppy trade as investors weighed up signs of easing regulatory crackdown on tech in China against ongoing expectations for Federal Reserve monetary policy tightening.

Big tech was mostly higher, led by Alphabet (NASDAQ: GOOGL ) and Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN ), with the latter up nearly 2% after its 20-for-1 split took effect Monday. The move is expected to make the stock more attractive to retail investors.

Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL ), meanwhile, was up less than 1% after the tech giant announced a new iPhone software update and its latest chip, the M2.

Ahead of the event, investors were eagerly anticipating clues on the company’s AR/VR [augmented reality/virtual reality] technology, which “will be a key broadening out of the Apple ecosystem as the company aggressively goes after the metaverse opportunity with Apple Glass,” Wedbush said in a recent note.

Twitter (NYSE: TWTR ), meanwhile, cut some losses after confirming it intended to enforce the $44 billion take-private deal with Elon Musk.

In a regulatory filing, Musk threatened to walk away from the deal, alleging that the social media company had materially breached the terms of the deal by failing to provide information about the number of both fake accounts and users on its platform.

China stocks were also in rally mode, led by DiDi Global (NYSE: DIDI ), up almost 25% as reports that Chinese regulators are reportedly ending their probe into the ride-hailing company fueled optimism that Beijing’s crackdown on tech is nearing an end.

Consumer stocks were the top-performing sector on the day, with casino stocks doing some of the heavy lifting as investors digested news about a further loosening of Covid-19 lockdown measures in China.

Caesars Entertainment (NASDAQ: CZR ), and Penn National (NASDAQ: PENN ) ended the day up around 3%, while Wynn Resorts (NASDAQ: WYNN ) gained more than 2%.

Energy stocks shrugged off a retreat in oil prices as investors weighed up a recent commitment from OPEC and its allies to increase output.

In deal news, Spirit Airlines Inc (NYSE: SAVE ) surged 7% after JetBlue Airways Corp (NASDAQ: JBLU ) sweetened its takeover offer for the discount airline. Jetblue raised its break-up fee - the amount paid to Spirit if the deal is blocked by regulators - to $350 million, representing $3.20 per Spirit share.

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