US stocks open mixed; Fed, earnings eyed

Brendan McDermid | Reuters Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

Brendan McDermid | Reuters
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

U.S. stocks opened mixed on Tuesday, as investors eyed strong Apple earnings and the beginning of the Federal Reserve’s two-day meeting.

“The day before the Fed meeting I don’t expect much,” said Peter Boockvar, chief market analyst at The Lindsey Group. “Outside of that it’s going to be earnings and of course Apple.”

The Fed meeting gets underway Tuesday, with the conclusion and post-meeting statement due Wednesday. A wave of disappointing domestic data since the previous FOMC meeting has spurred economists to downgrade their outlooks for the U.S. economy in 2015. Investors will be eyeing any comments from the Fed for hints as to when it might hike interest rates.

To be sure, with no press conference on Wednesday, analysts do not expect major news out of the U.S. central bank this week.

Read More US markets waver ahead of Fed meeting

Apple shares rose more than 2 percent ahead of the opening bell as the tech giant carried over its acquired momentum from Monday’s earnings report. The company reported quarterly earnings per share of $2.33 on revenue of $56.08 billion, both above consensus estimates. Apple also said it would expand its capital return program to $200 billion from $130 billion.

Boockvar said that Apple’s movements should not necessarily translate into the broader market.

Apple closed up 1.8 percent on Monday ahead of its earnings report. However, a major decline across biotechs weighed on the major indices, which failed to hold Friday’s records and closed lower on Monday.

Read More Apple boosts buybacks, earnings beat on strong iPhone sales

The euro strengthened to above $1.09, with hopes of progress on the Greece debt talks, Boockvar said. However, the stronger currency put pressure on European stocks.

Greek Prime Minister, Alexis Tsipras, said on Monday that he may resort to a referendum if lenders insist on demands that the government deems unacceptable, Reuters reported. But he added that he was confident of striking a deal to avoid such a scenario.

Data expected Tuesday include April’s Conference Board consumer confidence survey results at 10.00 a.m. ET. They are expected to register a rise, consistent with a positive spending impetus among households.

The S&P/Case-Shiller’s 20-City Composite gained 5 percent year-over-year in February, compared with a 4.5 percent increase in January.

“This is certainly good news at a time (when) we need good news,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Securities.

He noted while traders will watch Apple, they have a slew of other earnings to watch.

Reports from Twitter, Samsung Electronics, Kraft Foods, GoProBuffalo Wild Wings are all due after the bell.

Symbol
Name
Price
Change
%Change
DJIA Dow Jones Industrial Average 18075.80
37.83 0.21%
S&P 500 S&P 500 Index 2108.65
-0.27 -0.01%
NASDAQ Nasdaq Composite Index 5061.00
0.76 0.01%

BP shares edged higher in London trading after it managed to beat its own profit expectations in a first-quarter release before the opening bell

Read More Early movers: BP, F, AAPL, BMY, COH, PFE & more

Pfizer‘s stock traded slightly lower ahead of the bell after lowering its 2015 guidance for earnings per share and revenue. The pharmaceutical giant also reported quarterly adjusted profits of 51 cent per share on revenue of $10.86 billion, both of which beat Wall Street estimates.

CNBC’s Jenny Cosgrave and Fred Imbert contributed to this report

On tap this week:

Tuesday

Fed meeting starts

Earnings: Samsung Electronics, Aflac, Akamai, GoPro, Kraft Foods, Range Resources, Twitter, Western Digital, Buffalo Wild Wings, Panera Bread, U.S. Steel

10 a.m.: Consumer confidence, housing vacancies

1 p.m.: $35 billion 5-year notes

Wednesday

Earnings: Deutsche Bank, Fiat Chrysler, Northrop Grumman, General Dynamics, Hess, Starwood, Brunswick, Carlyle Group, Spirit Airlines, Norfolk Southern, Southern Co, Time Warner, Garmin, GrubHub, International Paper, Thomson Reuters, MasterCard, Marriott, Whiting Petroleum, Williams Cos, Boston Beer, Cabot, Murphy Oil, Baidu, Vertex, Yelp, Shutterfly, LaQuinta, Goodyear

8:30 a.m.: Q1 GDP, pending home sales

1:00 p.m.: $29 billion 7-year notes

2:00 p.m.: FOMC statement

Thursday

Earnings: ExxonMobil, ConocoPhllips, Royal Dutch Shell, Sanofi, Statoil, BNP Paribas, Visa, AIG, LinkedIn, Colgate-Palmolive, Celgene, Delphi Automotive, Air Products, Cigna, Cardinal Health, Sony, Time Warner Cable, Teva Pharma, Viacom, Beazer Homes, First Solar, FireEye, Dreamworks Animation, Healthsouth

8:30 a.m.: Initial claims, personal income/spending, employment cost index, Fed Gov. Daniel Tarullo

9:45 a.m.: Chicago PMI

Friday

Vehicle sales

Earnings: Chevron, CVS Health, Aon, Calpine, Clorox, Moody’s, Newell Rubbermaid, Duke Energy, Weyerhaeuser, TransCanada, VF Corp, Madison Square Garden, Legg Mason, CBOE

8:30 a.m.: Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester

9:45 a.m.: Manufacturing PMI

10 a.m.: ISM manufacturing, construction spending, consumer sentiment

3:45 p.m.: San Francisco Fed President John Williams

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