Meanwhile, investors continued to monitor developments in Washington’s probes of big tech, after federal regulators announced they were slapping Facebook with two new fines Wednesday morning.
The S&P 500 (^GSPC) edged up 0.47%, or 14.09 points, as of market close, ending the session at 3,019.56 points. The Dow (^DJI) declined 0.29%, or 79.42 points, while the Nasdaq (^IXIC) rose 0.85%, or 70.1 points, ending the session at 8,321.5.
Wednesday morning, Boeing reported a massive quarterly loss as costs mounted for the beleaguered aerospace company.
Still struggling through the international grounding of its 737 Max jets, Boeing posted core losses of $5.82 per share in the quarter, while earnings of $1.96 per share had been expected. Total net loss was $2.94 billion for the quarter, where net income of a similar magnitude had been reported in the same quarter last year. Boeing’s loss captures a previously reported $4.9 billion charge as a result of the 737 Max groundings, which have not flown since mid-March.
Meanwhile, Caterpillar, a bellwether of global manufacturing and capital spending, missed quarterly earnings expectations and guided to the low end of its previously announced full-year profit range. The heavy equipment-maker reported weak construction sales in the Asia/Pacific region and a year-over-year decline in Energy & Transportation sales, as soft demand from North American oil and gas customers weighed on results.
Facebook (FB) is also poised to report quarterly results after the closing bell. The results come after the Federal Trade Commission said Wednesday morning that the social media giant would pay a record $5 billion fine as part of a settlement ending a year-long investigation over Facebook’s privacy policies. The settlement also creates an independent privacy committee of directors on Facebook’s board.
The Securities and Exchange Commission also announced a separate settlement with Facebook Wednesday morning for $100 million, over allegations that the company made misleading disclosures to investors about risks relating to its privacy practices.
Big tech firms have recently found themselves squarely in the crosshairs of federal scrutiny, as growing concerns over privacy and antitrust practices generated a chorus of cries from lawmakers and regulators calling for a break-up of big tech.
Investors continued to digest a Justice Department announcement Tuesday that the agency was launching a review of potential anti-competitive practices among major online platforms.
The announcement, which did not point to specific companies under scrutiny, comes after the Department of Justice and Federal Trade Commission recently divvied up enforcement authority over companies including Amazon (AMZN), Google-parent Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL), Facebook (FB) and Apple (AAPL), amplifying concerns over the implications for these companies as Washington ratchets up oversight.
Emily McCormick is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter: @emily_mcck
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