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Stock Market Today: Dow Ends Lower as Fed Fears Overshadow Pop in Pepsi

Stock Market Today: Dow Ends Lower as Fed Fears Overshadow Pop in Pepsi
© Reuters.

 

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By Yasin Ebrahim

Investing.com — The Dow slipped Wednesday, as the Federal Reserve’s September minutes signaling higher for longer rates overshadowed a surge in Pepsi following better-than-expected quarterly results.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 0.1% or 28 points, the Nasdaq fell 0.1%, and the S&P 500 fell 0.3%.

Federal Reserve policymakers continued to reiterate the need to push monetary policy into restrictive territory and keep rates at elevated levels until there was “compelling evidence” that inflation was on track to slow toward the Fed’s 2% target.

“With no notable pushback [in the FOMC minutes] against the current pace of rate hikes, we see the FOMC on track for another 75bp hike in November,” Morgan Stanley said in a note.

The minutes arrived as investors fret over an inflation report due Thursday that economists expect to show that core inflation, which excludes food and energy prices, continues to run hot.

Adding to those concerns, wholesale inflation released on Tuesday showed that price pressures for businesses increased at a faster pace than feared in September.

Energy, however, helped to keep the broader market above the flatline despite a slip in oil prices as Valero Energy Corporation (NYSE:VLO) and Coterra Energy Inc (NYSE:CTRA) and Phillips 66 (NYSE:PSX) racked up gains.

Consumer staples were driven higher PepsiCo (NASDAQ:PEP) after the company lifted its annual guidance and reported better-than-expected quarterly results, underpinned by price hikes. Its shares jumped 4%.

The snack and beverage giant’s ability to pass on higher costs to consumers has caught the eye of investors looking to weather the current market volatility amid economic uncertainty and rising interest rates.

“If you want to weather this volatility, until we answer the question of a shallow recession or not, Pepsi is the type of business that we would be looking at because it does have positive cash flow, good earnings structures going forward, and they’ve invested in their own future growth,” Brian Mulberry, client portfolio manager at Zacks said ahead of Pepsi’s quarterly results in a recent interview with Investing.com.

Technology remained under pressure as gains in Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL) and Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) were offset by a drag from weakness in chip stocks.

In other news, Moderna (NASDAQ:MRNA) jumped 8% after announcing that it would team up with Merck & Company Inc (NYSE:MRK) to develop and sell a cancer drug.

Source: Investing.com

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