Skip to main content

When you’re waiting for one of the top components of the S&P 500 index to report earnings, let alone a leader in the latest AI tech, it can be difficult to side with either the bulls or bears.

There was clear apprehension and indecision coming into Wednesday’s session in the index futures. Starting with a slightly lower open of the regular session, the action that followed could only be described as chop. The release of January’s FOMC meeting minutes at 2pm EST momentarily tipped the scales in favor of the bears, driving the index to new lows for the week. However, the 4960 area proved to be a critical support zone, with the bears unable to press further as the market braced for NVIDIA’s post-market earnings announcement.

In the final hour, the bulls rolled back into action and were able to bring the index into green territory for the first time. The regular session finished just off new intraday highs, up 4.75 handles to close at 4996.25. Though only a slight gain, the last after hours print was over 20 handles higher, being heavily influenced by after hours earnings (more on that below).

Alphabet Inc Class C (NASDAQ: GOOG) claimed the title of the biggest gainer for the regular session among top components. The issue was able to advance by $1.64 or 1.15% to close at $143.84 for the day.

This performance was over one percent better than the cash index’s advance of 0.09%.

The biggest loser in the regular session ended up being NVIDIA Corp (NASDAQ: NVDA) as traders and investors held their breath for the earnings report to be released after the close. By the closing bell, the issue had declined by $19.80 or -2.85% to close at $674.72. After hours trading was an entirely different story. The issue dipped below $650 momentarily, then continued much higher to meet all-time highs ($746 area). As of writing this article, the hardware giant is up about $30.50 or 4.4% for the day, trading around $725. Needless to say, Q4 earnings and forecasts blew out expectations, but market participants will have to wait and see if it was enough to sustain current levels.