Stocks rose on Friday as investors digested a pairing between two of the largest American automakers and prepared for the Federal Reserve’s next decision on rate hikes.
The Nasdaq has risen for seven straight weeks while the S&P 500 is at its highest levels since August 2022.
The S&P 500 finished Thursday’s trading sessions up more than 20% from its October 2022 lows, officially marking the start of a bull market. The stock rally to start 2023 comes as strong economic data continues to outweigh incessant recession fears.
“I do believe that the worst is behind us,” BMO Capital Markets Chief Investment Strategist Brian Belski, who recently boosted his S&P year-end price target from 4,300 to 4,550, told Yahoo Finance Live. “The Fed, maybe, has one more interest rate increase between now and the end of the year, and that’s OK, but I think most of that has been already priced into the market.”
Shares of Tesla (TSLA) and General Motors (GM) both traded higher at the market open after GM announced Thursday it is joining forces with Tesla to leverage the electric-vehicle maker’s Supercharger Network. The announcement comes two weeks after Ford (F) announced a similar partnership with Tesla to enable access for Ford vehicles to Tesla’s charging network.
“This collaboration is a key part of our strategy and an important next step in quickly expanding access to fast chargers for our customers,” GM CEO Mary Barra said in a press release.
Tesla shares rose 4% on the news, extending an 11 day rally. The recent surge in Tesla shares is tied for the most consecutive days of gains ever.
Shares of Docusign (DOCU) turned negative as the company beat analyst estimates for both revenue and earnings per share in the most recent quarter. Several Wall Street analysts reiterated sell ratings on the stock.
“DocuSign attributed the out-performance to renewal timing, only passed a portion of the 1Q beat to the full year guide and sounded somber about the state of the demand backdrop,” UBS analyst Karl Keirstead wrote in a note to clients after the earnings release.
Meanwhile, Netflix (NFLX) stock gained 2.6% on Friday after new data from analytics platform Antenna showed US sign-ups for the streaming service jumped by the most in at least four and a half years following the streamer’s password sharing crackdown launching last month.
On the economic front, Friday is expected to be quiet. Markets projecting the Fed’s next move are currently pricing in a 78% chance the Federal Reserve pauses its interest rate hike cycle at its meeting next week.
“The FOMC is likely to pause at its June meeting next week to let the haze clear before it considers another rate hike,” a Goldman Sachs team of economists led by Jan Hatzius wrote in a note to clients Thursday night.
The economists added: “The Fed leadership has signaled that it sees pausing as the prudent course because uncertainty about both the lagged effects of the rate hikes it has already delivered and the impact of tighter bank credit increases the risk of accidentally overtightening.”
Josh is a reporter for Yahoo Finance.