Dow gains 90 points; markets on pace for best month of 2022

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July 25 (UPI) — All three major U.S. indexes were on pace for their best month of the year entering July’s final week of trading on Monday.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 90.75 points, or 0.28%, and the S&P 500 rose 0.13%, while the Nasdaq Composite lagged behind, falling 0.43%.

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Monday’s mixed results came as more than 150 S&P 500 companies were set to report earnings this week, including major tech names such as Apple, Microsoft and Google parent Alphabet.

So far 10 of the S&P 500’s 11 sectors have risen since mid-June lows with only energy lagging behind.

“Whether it’s a rally from an established bottom by the market or a ‘bear market rally,’ there’s fodder for argument between bulls and bears in any given moment in day to day market action,” John Stoltzfus, chief market strategist at Oppenheimer Asset Management, said in a note to clients Monday.

Walmart on Monday cut its quarterly and full-year profit guidance, citing the impact of inflation on consumer spending, sending shares falling more than 8% in after-hours trading.

Tech stocks also continued to decline Monday after social media company Snap reported Thursday that it missed earnings expectations for the second quarter and did not issue third-quarter guidance, citing the financial climate.

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Facebook parent Meta fell 1.55% and Amazon declined 1.05%.

Conversely energy stocks got a boost due to rising oil prices, with Marathon Oil gaining 6.57%, while APA Corp increased 6.23% and Chevron climbed 2.98% to lead the Dow.

Investors on Monday were also anticipating a policy announcement from the Federal Reserve on Wednesday and a release of GDP data Thursday.

“Investors likely believe Thursday’s GDP report will show a second quarter of decline, which is the unofficial signal of recession,” Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at CFRA Research told CNBC.

“While the Fed will probably announce a 75-basis-point rate hike on Wednesday, they will offer a more moderate tone towards further rate increases. We see this counter-trend rally continuing in the near term,” Stovall said.