Markets Right Now: Stocks open higher on Wall Street

08 Août, 2018, 22:23 | Auteur: Auguste Feret

The S&P 500 inched nearer to a record high on Tuesday, lifted by Amazon, Alphabet and Microsoft, and by a strong second-quarter earnings season that fueled optimism about the USA economy's strength.

Stocks are opening higher on Wall Street as technology companies and banks put up some solid gains. As long as there are still strong earnings and there are no corporate blow-ups, there's nothing that says we have to stop. "Momentum can go on for a long time", said Liz Young, senior investment strategist at BNY Mellon Investment Management in NY.

USA stocks were slightly lower on Wednesday as a steep fall in crude oil prices hit energy shares, more than offseting gains in technology and bank stocks.

Shares of Bank of America (BAC.N), JP Morgan (JPM.N) and Wells Fargo (WFC.N) rose between 0.6 percent and 0.9 percent, lifting the sector. "To the extent that bond yields go higher, specifically on the 10-year Treasury note you seem to see rallies in financials", said Chris Zaccarelli, chief investment officer at Independent Advisor Alliance in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The S&P 500 energy index gained one per cent after U.S. sanctions on Iranian goods went into effect, intensifying concerns about supply.

Other notable index closes included the S&P 400 Mid-Cap Index at 2,009.50 for a gain of 9.46 points or 0.47%; the S&P 100 at 1,262.57 for a gain of 5.38 points or 0.43%; the Russell 3000 at 1,691.85 for a gain of 6.83 points or 0.41%; the Russell 1000 at 1,580.44 for a gain of 6.06 points or 0.38%; and the Dow Jones U.S. Select Dividend Index at 715.27 for a loss of -0.13 points or -0.02%. The Internet retail and infrastructure heavyweight provided the greatest lift to the S&P 500, followed by Alphabet and Microsoft.

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A strong earnings season has kept up the momentum in the markets and cushioned major blows from trade-related issues.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 126.73 points (0.50 per cent) at 25,628.91, while the S&P 500 had gained 8.05 points (0.28 per cent) to 2,858.45.

With the second-quarter reporting season winding down, 79 percent of S&P 500 companies have topped estimates. The Nasdaq composite climbed 30 points, or 0.4 per cent, to 7,893.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers for a 1.33-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and for a 1.16-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

The S&P index recorded 21 new 52-week highs and three new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 63 new highs and 65 new lows.

Volume on US exchanges was 6.2 billion shares, compared with the 6.3 billion-share average for the last 20 trading days.

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