S&P 500 Update: Autodesk Jumps on Activist Stake Reports

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The S&P 500 Hits All-Time High as Autodesk Leads the Way

Key Takeaways:

  • The S&P 500 added 0.8% on Monday, June 17, 2024, posting an all-time closing high to kick off a new week of trading.
  • Shares of Autodesk led the S&P higher after an activist investor announced a stake in the design software company, saying it would push for board and operational changes.
  • First Solar shares moved lower, extending losses posted by the stock at the end of last week as the updated rate outlook weighed on the solar sector.

Major U.S. equities indexes jumped higher to kick off the new trading week. The S&P 500 jumped 0.8%, reaching a new all-time closing high. The Nasdaq popped 1.0% to close in record territory for the sixth consecutive session. The Dow was up 0.5%.

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Autodesk (ADSK) shares jumped 6.5%, marking the day’s top performance in the S&P 500, following reports that activist investor Starboard Value had accumulated a position in the engineering design software company. Sources said Starboard met with Autodesk executives to discuss the firm’s operations and corporate governance, and the investor will reportedly push for changes to the board of directors and seek ways to boost margins. Shares of Autodesk have come under pressure this year amid an investigation into its accounting practices.

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Broadcom and Tesla Soar

Broadcom (AVGO) shares advanced 5.4%, popping to a record high. The move higher on Monday added to massive gains posted last week after the chipmaker reported better-than-expected quarterly sales and announced a 10-for-1 stock split. Analysts have expressed enthusiasm in recent weeks about Broadcom’s potential to benefit from artificial intelligence (AI) opportunities.

Tesla (TSLA) shares drove 5.3% higher on Monday after CEO Elon Musk touted the company’s progress on its Optimus humanoid robots. According to Musk, Tesla plans to deploy more than 1,000 of the robots next year. The CEO has previously said the robots could eventually outsell Tesla’s cars. Tesla also announced on Monday that its Model 3 Long Range now qualifies for the electric vehicle (EV) tax credit.

Super Micro Computer and First Solar Struggle

Shares of server and data storage provider Super Micro Computer (SMCI) soared 5.1% on Monday. The stock debuted on the benchmark index in March, and optimism about Supermico’s position in the AI market has helped lift its shares a whopping 211% year to date.

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First Solar (FSLR) shares suffered the steepest losses in the S&P 500 on the day, slipping 4.5%. The downturn extended declines posted by the stock on Friday. The recent declines marked a reversal from the stock’s strong performance in May when analysts highlighted First Solar’s potential to benefit as big tech giants seek eco-friendly solutions to power their AI operations.

Align Technology and Vistra Face Challenges

Shares of Align Technology (ALGN), which manufactures orthodontic treatment devices, dropped 4.1%. The drop in Align shares on Monday also exacerbated losses posted last week following the company’s quarterly earnings report. Despite posting revenue and earnings growth, the company’s guidance came in below expectations amid concerns about its China market.

Vistra (VST) shares also fell 4.1% on Monday. The utility company’s stock has posted strong gains in 2024 amid enthusiasm about its potential to meet AI-driven power demand, but it has been trending downward so far in June.

Overall, Monday was a mixed day for U.S. equities, with some companies soaring to new heights while others faced challenges. Investors will be closely watching how these trends continue throughout the week.

Read the original article on Investopedia.

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