The S&P 500 rose to its highest level in five months on Thursday as better-than-expected Meta results further improved sentiment around technology shares, which led the market lower last year.
The broader market index jumped 1.4%, or its best level since August. Meanwhile, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite advanced about 3% to its highest level since September. The gains come ahead of a trio of Big Tech results after the bell in Apple, Amazon and Alphabet.
Meanwhile, the Dow Jones Industrial Average underperformed, falling 102 points, or about 0.3%. The major index was dragged by Merck shares after the pharmaceutical firm issued a weak outlook in its latest earnings results, despite beating estimates on the top and bottom lines.
Meta surged more than 25% in its best day since 2013 after reporting a fourth-quarter beat on revenue and announcing a $40 billion stock buyback. That helped investors look past losses in the business unit overseeing the metaverse.
Other mega-cap tech stocks rose on the back of those results. Shares of Google-parent Alphabet were up more than 6%, while Amazon jumped more than 6%. Apple shares gained more than 3%.
Tech stocks have outperformed in 2023, buoyed by recent signals of cooling inflation that investors expect could lead to a pause from the Federal Reserve in its aggressive rate hiking campaign. The S&P 500 information technology sector is up more than 14% this year after a decline of more than 28% last year.
“It’s showing that growth is…