Stock market today: Wall Street is mixed as calm continues

NEW YORK — Wall Street barely budged again on Wednesday following another set of mixed earnings reports from big U.S. companies.

The S&P 500 inched down by 0.35 points, or less than 0.1%, to 4,154.42. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 79.62, or 0.2%, to 33,897.01, and the Nasdaq composite edged up by 3.81 points, or less than 0.1%, to 12,157.23.

Financial Markets Wall Street

Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange on Monday in New York.

Tesla weighed heavily on the market after the electric-vehicle company cut prices for its two top-selling models, its fourth price cut in the U.S. this year. That could be a signal Tesla is trying to spur sales amid shifting U.S. tax credits for electric vehicles. Tesla fell 2% before releasing its latest earnings report after trading closed.

Netflix slumped 3.2% after reporting weaker revenue for the latest quarter than analysts expected, though its profit topped forecasts.

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Elevance Health dropped 5.3% despite reporting stronger profit and revenue than expected. The health insurer gave a forecast for earnings this year that fell short of some analysts’ expectations.

So far, most companies have been beating profit forecasts to clear a bar that was set particularly low. Analysts came into this reporting season forecasting the sharpest drop S&P 500 earnings since the pandemic torpedoed the global economy in 2020. Profits are under pressure because inflation is high, interest rates are much higher than a year ago and portions of the economy are slowing.

“That’s part of the reason why the market has been kind of directionless” recently, said Megan Horneman, chief investment officer at Verdence Capital Advisors. “We got mixed earnings, but not as bad as people expected.”

Intuitive Surgical leaped 10.9% for one of the biggest gains in the S&P 500 after delivering stronger profit and revenue for the latest quarter than expected.

Abbott Laboratories rose 7.8%, Nasdaq Inc. gained 3.1% and United Airlines flew 7.5% higher after they also topped Wall Street’s expectations for profits.

Particular focus has been on the health of banks after higher interest rates helped lead to the second- and third-largest U.S. bank failures in history last month.

The industry’s behemoths have largely reported better results than expected, with several saying they benefited from the industry’s turmoil as customers moved deposits to them and away from smaller banks that seemed at greater risk.

The fear was how much pain smaller, regional banks would show in their quarterly reports, including how many of their customers fled.

Western Alliance Bancorp., a Phoenix-based bank whose stock plunged nearly 64% over a five-day stretch last month, surged after it said deposits stabilized after an initial drop and have been rising in recent weeks. Its stock jumped 24.1%.

It helped lead the majority of financial stocks higher.