What happened

Chewy (CHWY -5.48%) shareholders beat the market on Wednesday. The pet supply specialist's stock jumped 6% by 3 p.m. ET, compared to a 1.9% rise in the S&P 500. The boost only erased a small part of Chewy's recent losses, though, and the stock remains lower by almost 30% so far in 2022.

Wednesday's rally came as investors processed new comments from the Federal Reserve indicating a potential slowdown in the pace of interest rate increases.

So what

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said in a speech on Wednesday that the Fed will likely raise rates at a slower rate in December than investors have seen in recent months. That suggestion was enough to spark a strong rally in the Nasdaq Index, which jumped about 3%.

Chewy's growth stock status, and its position as an e-commerce specialist, has made it sensitive to big moves in the tech-heavy Nasdaq index. Today's stock price spike is another example of that sensitivity.

Now what

Chewy is profitable and does not rely on debt to fund its growth initiatives, meaning its business isn't directly exposed to rising interest rates. But a recession would still pressure sales and earnings as consumers pull back on spending.

Investors won't have to wait long to learn how well Chewy is holding up in today's spending environment. The company is set to announce fiscal Q3 results on the afternoon of Dec. 8.

Watch that report for continued signs of Chewy's pricing power. If the company can continue attracting more customers to its auto-ship service even as prices increase, then it is likely to see solid earnings even in a soft consumer spending environment. Success there is the surest path toward positive long-term returns for holders of this growth stock.