Trib 30 index of stocks push to record high
The Trib 30 index of local stocks pushed to a record-high 383.0 in April amid reports of renewed consumer confidence, up-beat first-quarter earnings and expectations that interest rates would remain low.
The local index extended its string of all-time highs to five straight months, dating back to December's close of 335.9 and besting March's 378.1.
Three out of four utilities in the Trib 30 index set 52-week highs during April, which included reports last week that the U.S. economy grew by an annualized rate of 2.5 percent in the first quarter — a sharp rebound from the anemic 0.4 percent rate during the fourth quarter.
The Trib 30 is an equal-weighted index of stocks of companies headquartered or dominant in Western Pennsylvania. An investor who divided $100,000 equally among the 30 stocks on Dec. 31, 1999, would have a portfolio worth $383,000 at the end of the month.
April had 10 of the 30 stocks in the Trib 30 hit new highs, while only two (Alcoa and U.S. Steel) fall to new lows. U.S. Steel yesterday reported a $73 million loss for the quarter, a narrower deficit than a year ago but worse than for the fourth quarter. Alcoa posted better-than-expected earnings but its sales were lower than expected.
Consumer confidence climbed more than forecast in April to a five-month high, said the Conference Board. Investors expect the Federal Reserve Board to keep interest rates low when it concludes a two-day meeting today.
Three out of five bank stocks in the local index recorded gains last month over March. PNC set a new high in April, when it reported strong earnings from adding customers and pockets of growth in demand for commercial loans.
Thomas Olson is a Trib Total Media staff writer. He can be reached at 412-320-7854 or firstname.lastname@example.org.