Memory Chipmakers Drive S&P 500 Fluctuations: Market Shares Surge

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Memory Chipmakers Drive S&P 500 Fluctuations: Market Shares Surge

Key Takeaways

  • The S&P 500 dropped 0.2% on Monday, April 1, 2024, kicking off the second quarter of the year in negative territory ahead of key jobs data later this week.
  • Walgreens shares tumbled after the pharmacy giant cut its full-year profit outlook last week, citing a challenging retail environment.
  • Shares of 3M jumped after it spun off its health care business, Solventum.

Major U.S. equities indexes were mixed on the opening day of trading for the second quarter of 2024.

After solid gains helped push stock market gauges to record highs in the early months of the year, investors will likely be looking toward this Friday’s employment report for indications the Federal Reserve can move forward with highly anticipated interest rate cuts in the coming months.

After printing an all-time closing high to wrap up first-quarter trading on Friday, the S&P 500 slipped 0.2% on Monday. The Dow dropped 0.6%, while the Nasdaq posted a minor gain of 0.1%.

Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) shares suffered the day’s steepest losses on the S&P 500, tumbling 9.9%. The pharmacy giant posted better-than-expected sales for its fiscal second quarter when it reported results last week but trimmed its full-year profit outlook, citing a challenging retail environment.

Shares of online crafts marketplace Etsy (ETSY) fell 4.1%. Although the company’s focus on handmade and vintage goods helps it stand out from other e-commerce players, growth for Etsy has been relatively flat since the boom in online shopping at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Universal Health Services (UHS) shares fell 4.0% following a judgment by a court in Urbana County, Illinois, finding indirect subsidiary The Pavilion Behavioral Health System negligent in a case involving the assault of a 13-year-old patient at its facility in 2020. The jury ruled that the company must pay the victim $535 million in damages.

3M (MMM) shares jumped 6.0%, marking the top performance on the S&P 500. The company’s stock was volatile Monday after it completed the spinoff of its health care business Solventum (SOLV). Shares of Solventum fell 0.7% on their first day of trading. In other news, 3M also said a federal court had approved its $10.3 billion settlement in a case related to “forever chemicals.”

Shares of memory chipmaker Micron Technology (MU) soared 5.4%, notching a record high, after Bank of America boosted its price target on the stock. The analyst team believes Micron is well positioned to increase its market share in the high-bandwidth memory (HBM) semiconductors that are essential to artificial intelligence (AI) processes.

The optimism around memory chips extended to Micron competitor Western Digital (WDC), whose shares jumped 3.8% on Monday. Western Digital was also the subject of positive analyst commentary last week, when Evercore ISI initiated coverage on the stock with an “outperform” rating, expressing confidence in the company’s plans to split its hard disk drive and flash memory businesses into two independent public companies.

Shares of casino operator Wynn Resorts (WYNN) surged 4.2% following reports that gaming revenue in the Macau special administrative region surged 53% year-over-year in March, driven by increasing tourism. With a hotel and casino resort in the city center of Macau, Wynn stands to benefit from a recovery in the region, which is the world’s largest gambling hub.

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