Wednesday was role reversal day for the major U.S. indices, with one particular stock giving a helpful nudge to the Nasdaq and the Dow taking a loss. All the while, earnings season kicked into high gear, and concerns over the debt ceiling filtered into investor sentiment.
The Nasdaq improved by 0.22% to 3,117.54, thanks to a 4%-plus gain in beaten-of-late Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL). That also helped the S&P finish with marginal gains to 1,472.63. The Dow ended 0.21% in the red to close at 13,507.01.
Hampering the Dow was Boeing (NYSE:BA), which fell more than 3% as its Dreamliner suffered yet another issue. Two Japanese airlines grounded their fleets of 787 aircraft after one of All Nippon Airways‘ (PINK:ALNPY) Dreamliners was forced into an emergency landing. Boeing’s drop was by far the largest in the Dow on Wednesday.
Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS) reported earnings that beat expectations, driven by strong results from its proprietary trading business. Investors bid up GS stock more than 4%, sending it to highs not reached in more than a year.
JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:JPM) struck another positive note for financials, saying both Q4 and full-year 2012 profit set records, which marks a third consecutive year of record income for the banking giant. JPM also announced that CEO Jamie Dimon’s bonus would be cut to $10 million (more than half of his 2011 haul) in lieu of the “London Whale” debacle. JPM climbed up just under 1% on the news.
Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) fell more than 4% after CNNMoney reported that at least one equity firm, TPG Capital, has walked away from a potential deal to take Dell private. Conversely, Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) ran up more than 4% after Dow Jones reported that HPQ has received interest from potential buyers about its Autonomy business unit.
Shares of Chipotle (NYSE:CMG) sank 5% after the Mexican food chain restaurant revised fourth-quarter earnings well below analysts’ expectations.
Finally, gun stocks Smith & Wesson (NASDAQ:SWHC, +5.7%) and Sturm, Ruger (NYSE:RGR, +5%), as well as outdoors retailer Cabelas (NYSE:CAB, +6.1%), forged ahead after President Barack Obama announced broad measures aimed at gun control legislation and action, including reintroducing a ban on assault-type weapons.
Earnings reports for Thursday include Intel (NASDAQ:INTC), General Electric (NYSE:GE), Citigroup (NYSE:C), and American Express (NYSE:AXP).
- Genworth Financial (NYSE:GNW): Up 8.86% (72 cents) to 8.85%
- Constellation Brands (NYSE:STZ): Up 6.15% ($2.24) to 6.15%
- Phillips 66 (NYSE:PSX): Up 4.36% ($2.28) to $54.52
- Crocs (NASDAQ:CROX): Down 9.68% ($1.52) to $14.19
- Splunk (NASDAQ:SPLK): Down 5.02% ($1.68) to $31.78
- General Motors (NYSE:GM): Down 4.22% ($1.29) to $29.31
Marc Bastow is an Assistant Editor at InvestorPlace.com. As of this writing, he was long AAPL, INTC and GE.