FILE - This July 15, 2013, file photo, shows a sign for Wall Street outside the New York Stock Exchange. The U.S. stock market opens at 9:30 a.m. EDT on Monday, Aug. 20, 2018. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

Retailers, airlines lead US stocks mostly higher

August 20, 2018 - 12:42 pm

U.S. stocks moved higher in afternoon trading Monday, on course to extend the market's gains from last week. Investors were bidding up shares in big department store chains and other consumer services companies. Industrial stocks also rose, led by airlines. Energy companies climbed along with the price of U.S. crude oil. Technology stocks lagged the broader market.

KEEPING SCORE: The S&P 500 index rose 8 points, or 0.3 percent, to 2,858 as of 1:35 p.m. Eastern Time. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 103 points, or 0.4 percent, to 25,772. The Nasdaq composite recovered from a morning slide, climbing 8 points, or 0.1 percent, to 7,824. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks also rebounded, picking up 5 points, or 0.3 percent, to 1,698. The S&P 500, the market's benchmark index, has posted a weekly gain in six of the past seven weeks.

TRADE TENSIONS: Investors have been feeling cautiously optimistic about the prospects for an end to the trade dispute between the U.S. and China, which has led to costly, dueling tariffs between the two nations. Hopes rose late last week on news that China will send an envoy to Washington this month to discuss a way out of the standoff before President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping meet in November.

THE QUOTE: "Is there motivation to get it resolved before November? Sure, but it's not going to be resolved any time soon," said Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager with Globalt Investments. "It's going to continue to be an overhang and there's going to be a lot of posturing before any real deals are reached."

RETAIL RALLY: Investors bid up shares in several department store chains. Kohl's picked up 3.1 percent to $78.79, while Macy's added 3.8 percent to $37.40. Nordstrom rose 3.1 percent to $60.99. Gap gained 2 percent to $31.89.

TAKING FLIGHT: Airlines climbed as part of a broader rise in industrial sector stocks. American Airlines Group was up 5 percent to $39.70, while United Continental gained 3.6 percent to $84.95. Southwest Airlines rose 3.5 percent to $61.77.

GETTING FIZZY: SodaStream jumped 9.4 percent to $142.09 after PepsiCo agreed to buy the Israeli fizzy drink maker for $3.2 billion.

BEING COURTED: China Biologic Products Holdings surged 9.4 percent to $100.64 after the company received a takeover offer from an investor group for $118 a share in cash.

A GOOD LOOK: Estee Lauder climbed 3 percent to $140.07 after the cosmetics company reported quarterly results that topped Wall Street's forecasts. The company benefited from better-than-expected global sales, particularly in Asia.

ZAPPED: Tesla fell 2.2 percent to $298.72 after analysts at JPMorgan cut their price target on the electric car maker.

TECH SLIDE: Shares in technology companies, which have outperformed other sectors this year, lagged the market. Intel fell 1.7 percent to $46.29.

BOND YIELDS: Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.83 percent from 2.87 percent late Friday.

ENERGY: U.S. benchmark crude rose 19 cents to $66.10 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, the standard for international oil prices, added 35 cents to $72.18 per barrel in London.

The pickup in oil prices helped lift energy sector stocks. Baker Hughes gained 2 percent to $31.64.

CURRENCIES: The dollar fell to 110.33 yen from 110.60 yen late Friday. The euro strengthened to $1.1458 from $1.1443.

MARKETS OVERSEAS: Germany's DAX added 1 percent, while France's CAC 40 rose 0.7 percent. Britain's FTSE 100 gained 0.4 percent. In Asia, Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 gave up 0.3 percent. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 added 0.1 percent. South Korea's Kospi was little changed. Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 1.4 percent. Shares also rose in Taiwan.

AP Editorial Categories: 
Comments ()