Wall Street indexes ended mixed on Friday as US economic growth came in below analysts’ expectations, while looking ahead of a busy weekend for international relations.
The S&P 500 eased nearly 0.1 percent, with real estate and energy components leading other sectors lower. The Dow Jones industrial average was also down, but it could hold above the 20,000 level. Markets were pressured by key earnings reports released on Friday.
Dow Jones Industrial Average: -0.04 percent / 20093.78 points
Standard & Poor’s 500: -0.09 percent / 2294.69 points
Nasdaq Composite: +0.10 percent / 5660.78 points
On Friday, investors were entirely focused on the fourth-quarter gross domestic product, which came in at a 1.9 percent growth rate while economists had forecasted a 2.1 percent expansion. In addition, the US Department of Commerce said durable goods orders fell 0.4 percent in December, against a 2.6 percent seen.
Other news included Michigan’s Consumer Expectations and Sentiment for January. Both indexes came in better-than-expected at 90.3 and 98.5 points respectively. Commodity traders also paid attention to Baker Hughes’ weekly oil rigs count. According to data, US drillers increased by 15 the number of oil platforms pumping crude in the country to a total of 566.
Meanwhile in Washington, President Donald Trump moved forward with his agenda on Friday by signing an executive order to momentarily forbid the entrance of foreign nationals from countries compromised by terrorism such as Syria, Iraq or Afghanistan.
On Saturday, Trump held several calls with international leaders, including Russian President Vladimir Putin, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President François Hollande of France, among others.
Last week, Trump met UK Prime Minister Theresa May in the White House, his first international visitor. Overall, the brief meeting had a clear message: the US supports British independence.
“The United States respects the sovereignty of the British people and their right of self-determination. A free and independent Britain is a blessing to the world, and our relationship has never been stronger.”
Today, US markets will keep an eye on the PCE Price Index for December (Forecast: 0.1%) at 13:30 GMT and Pending Homes Sales (Forecast: 1.1%) at 15:00 GMT.