Stocks opened little changed as the market digested its recent gains and investors waited for the afternoon release of the Fed minutes from last month’s FOMC meeting. The averages moved in a narrow range but saw their highs just prior to the release of the minutes. The minutes showed that almost all Fed officials were unsure what interest rate moves would be needed in 2019, but some said they could see a rate hike if the economy stays on track. The minutes also stated that "almost all" committee members wanted to announce plan to stop reducing assets. As the market digested the news, the averages held onto their small daily gains, extending the market's recent win streak.
ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., minutes from the last Federal Reserve rate setting meeting read that the Fed sees "sustained expansion of economic activity" as one of the most likely outcomes over the next few years. The Fed added in the minutes that it will continue to monitor economic developments for outlook implications and that it saw a "variety of considerations" for a "patient approach to monetary policy."
TOP NEWS: Shares of CVS Health (CVS) fell 8% after the company reported mixed fourth quarter results and gave lower than expected guidance amid its integration of Aetna and uncertainty around rebates. Additionally, the healthcare company reported a $2.2B charge related to its long-term care facilities business.
Tesla (TSLA) shares slipped 1% following reports that the company's general counsel is leaving after just two months in the role. The departure of Dane Butswinkas comes just weeks after the company's chief financial officer announced his surprise retirement and the day after Elon Musk sent a tweet about car production that he subsequently had to correct.
Following recent media reports indicating that activist hedge fund Starboard Value has asked a proxy solicitor to evaluate the level of support among Bristol-Myers (BMY) investors for the company's planned acquisition of Celgene (CELG), Bristol-Myers confirmed that Starboard sent a notice of nomination in connection with Bristol-Myers' 2019 annual meeting, which the drugmaker said it would review. Starboard also advised Bristol in the notice that it had acquired 1M shares of the company's common stock, of which 999,000 shares were acquired on January 31, 2019.
Meanwhile, Samsung (SSNLF) was in focus after the technology giant unveiled a variety of new products at a company event, including a new line of smartphones, the Galaxy S10, which comes in four unique devices. The company also announced a new line-up of Galaxy wearables that includes the Galaxy Watch Active, the Galaxy Fit, and the Galaxy Buds. In addition, Samsung unveiled a new foldable phone called the Galaxy Fold. The device will use a new 7.3-inch Infinity Flex Display that allows the phone to have a tablet-sized screen that can be folded to fit into a pocket, the company said.
MAJOR MOVERS: Among the noteworthy gainers were Garmin (GRMN) and Invitae (NVTA), which gained a respective 17% and 14% after reporting quarterly results. In addition, Magellan Health (MGLN) shares jumped 11% after Reuters reported that the company is exploring a sale.
Among the notable losers was Owens & Minor (OMI), which dropped 17.5% after it named Ed Pesicka president and CEO and reported downbeat quarterly earnings. In addition, Reuters reported that the company is working with banks to explore a sale. Also lower after reporting quarterly results were Wix.com (WIX) and Bausch Health (BHC), which fell 12% and 4.5%, respectively.
INDEXES: The Dow rose 63.12, or 0.24%, to 25,954.44
, the Nasdaq gained 2.30, or 0.03%, to 7,489.07, and the S&P 500 advanced 4.94, or 0.18%, to 2,784.70