Stock market today: Indexes jump to close best week since November as investors cheer tech earnings

  • US stocks closed the week with their strongest gain since November on Friday.
  • Alphabet and Microsoft led a rally after earnings. Alphabet announced its first-ever dividend.

US stocks closed higher on Friday to end the best week since November, with tech rallying after earnings from mega-cap stalwarts.

Major stock indexes sidestepped so-so inflation data earlier in the day. Personal consumption expenditures, the Federal Bank’s preferred inflation gauge, rose by 2.8% in March, above expectations. Yet, the reading was still mostly in line, and didn’t provide any additional surprises after Thursday’s economic data similarly showed prices rising.

Instead, traders focused mostly on earnings strength from Alphabet and Microsoft.

Following earnings, during which it announced its first-ever dividend, Google parent Alphabet soared more than 10% in Friday trading a record high, reaching a market value above $2 trillion.

Meanwhile, Microsoft also rose, with the tech giant reporting strong results on strength in its Azure cloud segment,

The broader sector rallies in-line, with Amazon, Nvidia, and social media firm Snap all jumping.

In a Friday note, Fundstrat’s Mark Newton pointed out that the earnings of Alphabet and Microsoft are paving the way for a broad rally.

“I feel that Technology as a sector is near support and should not have much more downside,” he said.

Meanwhile, Bank of America’s US equity chief Savita Subramanian said on Friday that the US economy is still on solid footing despite slowing GDP and hot inflation.

“I feel like there’s been this swing from the world is ending, we’re going into a recession, to inflation is out of control, it’s stagflation, but there’s 98 or 96% of that bell curve is, all the rest of the scenarios that are more likely to happen,” Subramanian said in a CNBC interview.

Next week, Apple and Amazon, will release earnings and investors will be focused on the Fed’s next policy meeting scheduled for April 30-May 1.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the 4 p.m. closing bell on Friday:

  • S&P 500: 5,099.96, up 1.02%
  • Dow Jones Industrial Average: 38,239.66, up 0.4% (+153.86 points)
  • Nasdaq Composite: 15,927.90, 2.03%