Twitter Ignites Technology Sector, Helping Push the Stock Market to Record Highs
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In the busiest week of this corporate earnings season, companies are delivering the results and pushing the stock market to record highs.
Twitter led the parade. The social media leader handily beat analyst expectations and saw its shares jump 15.64 percent -- by far the biggest gain on the Entrepreneur Index™ today. Stocks were strong across all sectors of the market, however. Tech, healthcare and REIT stocks helped the Entrepreneur Index™ post a 1.38 percent gain today and set a record high.
The broader S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite indexes were up 0.88 percent and 1.32 percent respectively, both also setting new all-time highs in the process. The Dow index was up 0.55 percent and is within a percentage point of its high set last October.
Twitter's stellar numbers lit a fire under the entire technology sector today. Revenues were up 18 percent over last year's first quarter and earnings easily beat estimates. Most impressive was the increase in active users on the network, up 9 million from last quarter to 330 million. With Twitter still battling automated and abusive accounts on the platform, analysts expected another decline in active users. The jump today gives the stock a year-to-date return of 38.4 percent.
The rest of the tech sector surged as well. All four FAANG stocks on the index were up more than one percent, with Amazon.com (1.95 percent) rising the most. TripAdvisor Inc. (3.34 percent), Adobe Systems Inc. (2.3 percent) and salesforce.com (1.56 percent), also had good gains.
Healthcare stocks, one of the worst sectors in the market this year, rose sharply. Weighed down by concerns about Democratic plans for universal healthcare and regulation of drug prices, the sector threw caution to the wind today. Drug-makers Regeneron Pharmaceuticals and Alexion Pharmaceuticals were up 3.03 percent and 2.64 percent respectively. Hospital manager Universal Health Services was up 4.21 percent and medical device-maker Boston Scientific gained 2.75 percent.
The REIT market rebounded nicely today after a down day yesterday. The sector has been hobbled by weak home sales and high commercial vacancy rates of late. All nine REITs on the Entrepreneur Index™ were up today, however. Boston Properties (2.46 percent) and Kimco Realty Corp. (2.4 percent) had the biggest gains in the group.
Only six of 60 stocks on the index were down today. Retailer Gap Inc. and oil and gas producer Hess Corp. had the biggest declines, falling 0.63 percent and 0.62 percent respectively. Hess took a breather today despite the price of oil rising another 0.99 percent today. The stock is up 66.6 percent this year. Other losses on the index included Fedex Corp. (-0.43 percent), Bed Bath & Beyond (-0.36 percent), Brown-Forman Corp. (-0.23 percent) and Comcast (-0.02 percent).
The Entrepreneur Index™ collects the top 60 publicly traded companies founded and run by entrepreneurs. The entrepreneurial spirit is a valuable asset for any business, and this index recognizes its importance, no matter how much a company has grown. These inspirational businesses can be tracked in real time on Entrepreneur.com.