Stocks drift on Wall Street as earnings reports rev up
(Photo: AP)

STOCKS ended mixed on Wall Street after drifting between gains and losses as more big U.S. companies delivered their earnings reports for the last three months of 2022.

Some of them came up short of what investors were expecting, leading to drops in their stock prices. Post-it maker 3M sank after its earnings missed forecasts, and railroad operator Union Pacific fell after its results also disappointed investors. The S&P 500 fell less than 0.1 per cent, the Nasdaq composite fell 0.3 per cent, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.3 per cent. Long-term Treasury yields slipped and crude oil prices fell.

Markets have been swinging between hope and caution as investors watch to see if the Fed will adjust its inflation-fighting strategy. The central bank has already pulled its key overnight rate up to a range of 4.25 to 4.5 per cent from virtually zero early last year.

The Fed will announce its next rate increase on February 1 and traders expect a quarter-point raise, which would mark a softening of the central bank's pace.

Long-term bond yields fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury, which influences mortgage rates, fell to 3.47 per cent from 3.52 per cent late Monday.

Wall Street will get a few economic updates this week that could provide more insight into inflation's impact.

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