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US markets mixed; Microsoft rallied 2.85% on Q3 forecast; Mattel rose 4.3% on Disney licence update

  • The Nasdaq rose 0.02% to close Wednesday’s session at 13,542 points.
  • Microsoft popped 2.85% after providing a forecast for Azure growth in Q3.
  • Mattel jumped 4.3% on regaining licence to produce Walt Disney princess toys.

The US markets closed lower on Wednesday after the Federal Reserve announced it will halt its asset purchasing program in March as planned, in time for an expected interest rate hike. Policymakers reiterated their plans to hold interest rates near zero but recommitted to reversing the easy money policies of the pandemic-era to address rising inflation.

The Dow Jones fell 0.38% to finish the trading day down 130 points to close at 34,168 points.

The tech heavy NASDAQ rose 0.02% to finish the trading day up 3 points to close at 13,542 points with Tesla and Google gaining 2.07% and 1.98% respectively.

One bitcoin is worth US$36,453 going into the Asian trading day.

The Australian dollar is stronger against the major currencies and is buying 71.17 US cents.

Microsoft popped 2.85% yesterday after the tech giant provided a forecast that reassured investors that the company’s Azure cloud-computing business still has the ability to drive growth. Microsoft predicted that Azure’s revenue growth rate will pick up in Q3 from Q2.

Shares in toy maker Mattel jumped 4.3% after the company announced that it has won back the licence to make toys based on the Walt Disney princess lineup including Frozen and more. Hasbro won the licence off Mattel in 2016, but Mattel has now regained the licence to produce the toys moving forward.

And Tesla reported fourth quarter earnings results after the closing bell on Wednesday that beat market expectations including record quarterly revenue up 65% to US$17.72bn and delivered more than 936,000 vehicles worldwide in 2021. Tesla shares fell after-hours as the EV giant warned of supply chain constraints to come as well as battery and technology changes in the year ahead.

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