Stock Market Today Loses Midday Gains; Dow Jones Flat As Nvidia Tests Key Level,

An erratic Nasdaq composite reversed back into negative territory Thursday afternoon, down more than 0.5%, as tensions in the Middle East started to bubble up again. Chip giant Nvidia (NVDA) undercut its 50-day moving average, testing bullish investors. And fellow chipmaker Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing (TSM) delivered a defensive sell signal on the stock market today.


Volume was running virtually flat on both the Nasdaq and the NYSE vs. the same time on Wednesday.

At first, the Nasdaq composite edged down early, then reversed bullishly to post a gain. But the index slipped 0.4% in afternoon action amid reports that Israel is planning a counterattack on Iran as early as Monday. Crude oil futures rose nearly 0.2% to $82.83 a barrel before slipping a touch lower to $82.07, while natural gas surged 2.2%.

Light sweet oil futures continued to outperform U.S. stocks with a 15% gain year to date.

Now, the Nasdaq has fallen more than 3% for the week, marking the worst performance since the tech-centered index slid more than 3.2% in the first week of January.

Uptrend Still Under Pressure

Check out Wednesday’s Big Picture column for details on why Investor’s Business Daily’s current outlook has deteriorated to “uptrend under pressure” with a suggested stock market exposure level of 20%-40%.

The S&P 500 lost midday gains and reversed more than 0.3% lower. It headed into Thursday’s session up 5.3% year to date. Among IBD’s 197 industry groups, hand tool, hospital, automaker, design software and data storage software fell 1% or more.

The Russell 2000 moved up 1% in early afternoon trade, but the gains began to wither shortly after noon ET. The Russell backtracked 0.3% lower. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lost a fraction in recent trades. At 37,717, the 30-stock blue chip average is up less than 0.1% since Jan. 1 after advancing 13.7% in 2023.

Stocks Up, Treasuries Down

Meanwhile, the benchmark U.S. 10-year government bond yield rose 6 basis points to 4.65%. The yield has risen nearly 80 basis points since Jan. 1. CME FedWatch’s survey currently shows only a 15.3% probability that the Federal Reserve at its June 12 meeting will trim the fed funds rate by at least a quarter point from the current 5.25%-5.5% target range.

Stock market investors are focusing on the outlooks given by companies reporting quarterly results. Watch for earnings from Netflix (NFLX) and Intuitive Surgical (ISRG) after the regular session close.

Meanwhile, keep an eye on the bitcoin spot exchange traded funds ahead of the anticipated bitcoin halving event. Some observers believe the event will create more scarcity of the key cryptocurrency, boosting prices in the long term.

The ProShares Bitcoin Strategy (BITO) exchange traded fund rallied 3% to 27.50 in dull turnover. The ETF still traded below its 50-day moving average but still looked poised to snap a four-session slump. The fund has rallied as much as 91% since it ran past a 17.70 breakout in a long double-bottom base.

Gains in any of the indexes have been meager even though the Philadelphia Fed’s manufacturing index showed a larger-than-expected rise to 15.5 in April. The Econoday forecast called for a zero reading. Weekly jobless claims inched up to 212,000, but remained below expectations of 215,000.

Nvidia Ekes Out A Gain, Taiwan Semi Slumps

Nvidia, the leader in data-center chipsets for accelerated computing and artificial intelligence, whipsawed traders as it briefly fell but then rebounded for a gain of as much as 2.5% on the stock market today. In afternoon trading, that advance got shaved to around 0.6%. Volume ran 9% below usual levels.

Readers can go to Leaderboard for a full analysis of the Nasdaq megacap tech’s chart action. The company maintains a three-quarter-size position on the model portfolio for winning growth stocks.

The Santa Clara, Calif., firm is expected to report fiscal Q1 results on May 22. Since the fiscal second quarter results last year, earnings pole-vaulted 429%, 593% and 486% vs. depressed year-ago levels. The current estimate for the just-ended April quarter calls for 473% growth to $5.20 a share on a 240% boost in sales to $24.5 billion.

Wall Street also sees earnings rocketing 107% in the July fiscal second quarter and a 100% revenue rise to $27 billion. The Earnings Per Share Rating is at a maximum 99 on a scale of 1 to 99.

Taiwan Semi Stock Analysis

For Taiwan Semi, the chip manufacturing behemoth sank more than 6% in rapid turnover in the early going, but trimmed that loss to under 5% in recent action. Nonetheless, the stock spurred a profit-taking signal by dropping sharply below its 50-day moving average. The chip giant also slashed through its 10-week line for the first time in more than five months.

The company reported a 9% rise in profit to the equivalent of $1.38 per share. Revenue of $20.4 billion was virtually unchanged. Still, Taiwan Semi snapped a slump in the bottom line that had lasted for at least four…

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