Stock Market Today: Dow ends higher as inflation cools again; Fed decision eyed

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Stock Market Today: Dow ends higher as inflation cools again; Fed decision eyed

Investing.com --The Dow closed higher Tuesday, led by tech as an ongoing slowdown in inflation kept hopes for an early rate cut next year alive just as the Federal Reserve readies its monetary policy decision slated for Wednesday.

By 16:00 ET (21:00 GMT), the 30-stock Dow Jones Industrial Average had gained by 173 points or 0.5%, the benchmark S&P 500 gained 0.5%, and tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite gained 0.70%. The main averages on Wall Street closed at fresh 52-week highs, with the S&P 500 touching its highest level since January 2022.

Inflation continues to cool, keeping lid on Treasury yields

Annual headline consumer price growth edged down to 3.1% last month, decelerating from 3.2% in October, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics on Tuesday. Month-on-month, the reading inched up by 0.1%. Economists had forecast the measures at 3.1% and 0.0%, respectively.

The closely-watched "core" figure, which strips out volatile items like food and energy, rose by 4.0% annually, in line with the prior month. On a monthly basis, underlying price gains came in at 0.3%, a marginally faster pace than 0.2% in October. Both matched estimates.

Following the data, bets on rate cut in the first half of the year remained supported, with about 50% of traders betting on cut in May, according to Investing.com's Fed Rate Monitor Tool.

Treasury yields fell, with the yield on the 10-year Treasury fell 3.3 basis points to 4.206%.

Oracle falls as quarterly revenue falls short; Hasbro slips on job cut plans

Oracle Corporation (NYSE: ORCL ) fell more than 12% after the cloud company reported quarterly revenue that fell short of Wall Street estimates amid sluggish cloud growth.

Hasbro Inc (NASDAQ: HAS ) fell more than 1% after the toymaker said it would cut about 20% of its workforce amid ongoing pressure from dwindling toy sales.

Fed kicks off two-day meeting

The Fed kicked off its two-day meeting Tuesday that is expected to culminate in decision to keep rates unchanged. The Fed's projections, or so-called dot plots, will likely garner the bulk of investor attention amid expectations for the Fed to increase the number of cuts next year.

But "with markets pricing about 100–125bps of cuts by end the of next year, I wouldn’t expect anything other than for the Committee to disappoint," Scotiabank said in a recent note.

Epic Games wins Google antitrust lawsuit

A federal jury has found against Google in a high-profile antitrust lawsuit brought by "Fortnite"-maker Epic Games, sending shares in the tech giant's parent Alphabet (NASDAQ: GOOGL ) lower.

Epic had argued that the tech giant essentially used its Play app store as an illegal monopoly that unfairly charged high fees on developers and suppressed competition in the Android app market. According to a court filing, the jury ruled in favor of Epic on all counts.

The court will begin to decide what changes Google will need to put in place in January. In a statement quoted by Reuters, Google said it will appeal the ruling.

Energy stocks dragged lower by slump in oil

Energy stocks fell more than 1% after oil prices tumbled on Tuesday, as worries over excess supply offset the impact of an attack on a commercial chemical tanker by Iran-aligned Houthis.

Occidental Petroleum Corporation (NYSE: OXY ), Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE: MRO ), and Devon Energy Corporation (NYSE: DVN ) were among the biggest decliners in the sector.

(Scott Kanowsky contributed to this report.)

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