Stocks ended mostly higher Thursday, with the S&P 500 notching its first record close since Sept. 2 as investors continued to applaud generally upbeat corporate earnings. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended the day down around 6 points, or less than 0.1%, near 35,603, while the S&P 500 advanced around 14 points, or 0.3%, to close near 4,550. The Nasdaq Composite gained around 94 points, or 0.6%, finishing near 15,216.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
Analysts at BTIG say although McDonald's Corp. "claims" to be testing the McPlant in eight restaurants, they think there's a "fairly high" chance that the plant-based sandwich will rollout out nationwide in 2022. "We believe interest in adding a plant-based meat option to menus is accelerating domestically at quick-service operators," analysts led by Peter Saleh said. "We believe that 2022 will be a pivotal year for plant-based meat in the QSR segment with many brands introducing the product or increasing their offering to further differentiate themselves from competitors." Analysts cite plant-based options at other fast-food chains, like the Impossible Whopper at Restaurant Brands International Inc. chain, Burger King. "In our view, many of the brands that are testing the offering will launch the product systemwide in effort to leverage national advertising to determine the true sales potential of the products." BTIG estimates that putting the McPlant on the menus at 13,000 McDonald's locations could add $200 million in revenue for Beyond Meat Inc. Like Credit Suisse analysts, BTIG think the eight test restaurants were chosen to determine the reception among a broad group of customers. BTIG rates Beyond Meat stock neutral, saying that while the company has strong brand awareness and consumers are adding plant-based meat alternatives to their diets, competition and weakness in the foodservice channel are hurting the business with prolonged COVID-19 disruption stalling a rebound as restaurants emphasize efficiency in the kitchen. Beyond Meat shares have fallen 13.7% for the year to date. McDonald's stock is up 12.6%. And the Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 16% for the period.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
Oil futures settled lower on Thursday, with U.S. prices down for the first time in six sessions, a day after the front-month contract settled at the highest since October 2014. Prices got a boost Wednesday as the Energy Information Administration reported a weekly decline in U.S. crude inventories --- the first in four weeks. On its first full trading day as a front-month contract, West Texas Intermediate crude for December delivery fell 92 cents, or 1.1%, to settle at $82.50 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
Gold futures ended with a loss on Thursday, easing back after posting gains in each of the last two trading sessions. The precious metal "appears stuck in 'no man's land', battling rising yields on the short-end of the curve" as Federal Reserve members try to push back rate hike expectations, said Edward Moya, senior market analyst at Oanda. "Bullion continues to struggle to recapture the $1,800 level," he said. December gold declined by $3, or 0.2%, to settle at $1,781.90 an ounce.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.
Enfusion Inc. was well received on its Wall Street debut, as the Chicago-based investment management software company's stock opened 17.6% above its IPO price. The company raised $260.5 million as it sold 15.32 million Class A shares in its initial public offering, which the company said overnight priced at $17 a share, at the top of the expected range of between $15 and $17 a share. Selling shareholders raised $58.3 million as they sold 3.43 million shares in the IPO. The stock's first trade on the NYSE was at $20.00 at 11:16 a.m. Eastern for about 2.3 million shares. With a total of about 113.05 million Class A and Class B shares outstanding expected after the IPO, the stock's first trade values the company at about $2.26 billion. The stock has pared some gains since the open to recently trade up 17.1% at $19.90. The company debuted on a day that the Renaissance IPO ETF rose 0.8% in midday trading while the S&P 500 slipped 0.1%.Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit MarketWatch.com for more information on this news.