The Nasdaq Leads the Stock Market Lower as the Bear Market Rally Pauses

(C) Reuters.

By Daniel Shvartsman — Leading U.S. stock market indices started the week on a down note, as the brief euphoria from last week’s rally faded amidst renewed inflation and commodity pricing fears.

The Nasdaq Composite was the big loser on the day, down 102 points or 0.9%. The S&P 500 closed down 0.2% while the commodity-exposed Dow Jones Industrial Average drifted 0.1% lower.

This comes with market participants sizing up last week’s counter-trend rally, and also perhaps getting ready for the slower summer trading season. Morgan Stanley’s Michael Wilson stated in a note this morning that, “we continue to believe any near-term rally is nothing more than a bear market bounce with lower lows ahead,” citing the headwinds of Fed policy, inflation, potential recession, and downwards corporate earnings revisions.

The commodity complex, whose sell-off drove optimism last week that perhaps the Fed would find reason to slow their hawkish run, saw mixed trading today. Crude Oil and Brent closed up, 1.8% and 1.7% respectively, as the Group of 7 Nations was on watch for further actions against Russia and Russian oil. US Wheat Futures closed trading 1.9% lower and US Cotton #2 Futures closed down 4%, at a 9-month low of 94.05 cents a pound. Oil is in the spotlight as the EIA continues to struggle with delivering its U.S. weekly report due to hardware failure.

Energy stocks led the way in Monday trading as they recovered from several rough sessions. Valero Energy (NYSE:VLO) closed up 8%, while Devon Energy (NYSE:DVN) finished 7.6% higher, the pair pacing the S&P 500, with sell-side shop Piper Sandler considering refinery pressure likely to sustain. Electronic Arts (NASDAQ:EA) and Etsy (NASDAQ:ETSY) led on the downside, trading 3.5% lower a piece, with Etsy in specific receiving an analyst downgrade due to a “worsening near-term macro outlook.”

The big earnings after the bell was due from footwear giant Nike (NYSE:NKE), which traded down 2.1% in the run-up to the earnings, not far above its 52-week high, with supply chains and China’s covid policies looming as threats to the current outlook.

And while there was no fresh merger news before the open on today’s merger Monday, Bloomberg reported that privately held crypto exchange FTX was considering an acquisition of Robinhood Markets Inc (NASDAQ:HOOD). The beleaguered stock brokerage saw its shares jump nearly 14% on the reports. FTX’s founder and CEO Sam Bankman-Fried already owns a 7.6% stake in the company, and FTX has been in the news recently for a series of crypto sector bailouts.

In that cryptocurrency sector, traders also saw a pullback from the recent bear market rally, with Bitcoin down 1.9% as of 4pm ET and Ethereum down 2.2%.

(This piece was published at 2:42pm ET and updated at 4:00pm ET).

The Nasdaq Leads the Stock Market Lower As The Bear Market Rally Pauses