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Stock Market Today: Investors Buy Into Pepsi's Plans and NVIDIA's Rosy Forecast

By Jim Crumly – Updated Apr 14, 2019 at 12:21AM

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Optimism about a trade deal with China pushed stocks higher.

Investor focus was back on trade on Friday, as positive signs for a deal with China lifted the market. Trade-sensitive industrial stocks helped the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI -0.38%) gain over 400 points, and the broader-based S&P 500 (^GSPC -1.03%) closed up as well.

Today's stock market

Index Percentage Change Point Change
Dow 1.74% 443.86
S&P 500 1.09% 29.87

Data source: Yahoo! Finance.

Bank stocks participated in the rally today, and a rise in crude oil lifted the energy sector. The SPDR S&P Bank ETF (KBE -0.08%) climbed 2.3% and the SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration & Production ETF (XOP -0.45%) jumped 2.7%. 

As for individual stocks, investors liked PepsiCo's (PEP -0.50%) outlook, and NVIDIA (NVDA -2.81%) met lowered expectations and offered an optimistic view of the upcoming year.

Hand drawing an upward graph.

Image source: Getty Images.

Investors like Pepsi's future

A major soft drink company reported fourth-quarter results that met expectations but gave guidance for 2019 that was below what analysts were expecting. That was the headline yesterday that sent Coca-Cola shares down 8%, but the same story for PepsiCo today propelled its stock up 3%.

PepsiCo's revenue was flat at $19.5 billion and core earnings per share came in at $1.49, up 17% excluding currency effects and right on target with expectations. Organic revenue, excluding currency and one-time events, grew 4.6% in the quarter and 3.7% for the year.

Coke and Pepsi both forecast 4% organic revenue growth in 2019, but for Pepsi, that's an improvement of 30 basis points, while it is a decline of 100 basis points for Coke. Investors seem to buy into plans that incoming Pepsi CEO Ramon Laguarta has for stimulating growth and making technology investments to generate $1 billion in annual savings through 2023.

A few days of share-price movements never tell the full story, and despite their different performances this week, Coca-Cola still sells for a slightly higher valuation relative to 2019 earnings guidance than Pepsi does.

NVIDIA foresees a big turnaround after next quarter

Revenue and profit at NVIDIA plunged in the fourth quarter, but cheery guidance for a big sales rebound later this year lifted shares 1.8%. Revenue fell 24% to $2.21 billion and earnings per share dropped 48% to $0.92. NVIDIA had updated its guidance last month, so the results were not much of a surprise.

Sales in NVIDIA's gaming segment continue to suffer from the collapse of cryptocurrency mining, which resulted in a huge amount of unsold inventory. The company also blamed "recent deteriorating end-market conditions," particularly in China, for low end-user demand.

Looking forward, NVIDIA guided to Q1 sales of $2.2 billion, well below the $2.4 billion analysts have been expecting, but full-year revenue of "flat to slightly down" from last year's $11.7 billion implied guidance above the $11.4 billion analyst consensus.

That turnaround suggests a huge second half for the chipmaker, which had the bulls and bears locked in debate about the likelihood of that today.

Check out the latest NVIDIA and Pepsi earnings call transcripts.

Jim Crumly owns shares of Nvidia. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Nvidia. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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