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US stocks end losing streak as industrials and retailers rise

Apple fell after saying a new round of bigger US tariffs could push it to raise prices.

Wall Street (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)
Wall Street (AP Photo/Richard Drew, File)

US stocks broke a four-day losing streak on Monday as industrial companies and retailers rose, and technology companies recovered some of their steep losses from last week.

Transportation and other industrial companies continued their recent rally and retailers like Nike, Home Depot and Walmart all climbed.

While technology companies rose overall, Apple fell after saying a new round of bigger US tariffs could push it to raise prices.

CBS slipped after it announced the departure of longtime chief executive Les Moonves, and Alibaba skidded after the big Chinese internet retailer said co-founder Jack Ma will step down as chairman in 2019.

Investors expect the US to put new tariffs on Chinese imports soon. The Hang Seng index in Hong Kong fell again after President Donald Trump again threatened to tax almost everything the US imports from China. The index has tumbled almost 20% since late January as the dispute has escalated.

Randy Frederick, vice president of trading and derivatives for Charles Schwab, said investors feel China has much more to lose in the conflict than the US does, as it exports much more to the US than it imports from it.

“If Chinese businesses and Chinese consumers get uncomfortable with this whole battle, they get nervous and they get tentative,” he said. “When people do that, they stop spending.”

The S&P 500 index gained 5.45 points, or 0.2%, to 2,877.13, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average lost 59.47 points, or 0.2%, to 25,857.07 as health insurer UnitedHealth and aerospace company Boeing traded lower.

The Nasdaq composite edged up 21.62 points, or 0.3%, to 7,924.16, and the Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks rose 4.29 points, or 0.3%, to 1,717.47.

The S&P 500 fell 1% last week, its worst drop since late June.

Nike rose 2.2% to 82.10 dollars. The stock slumped 3% on August 31 as investors worried about potential backlash to an advertising campaign featuring former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Nike’s stock has now regained almost all the ground it lost since then.

Technology companies moved higher as Microsoft picked up 1.1% to 109.38 dollars, and Broadcom rose 3.5% to 240.61 dollars. The S&P 500 technology index is coming off its largest weekly loss since March.

Apple fell 1.3% to 218.33 dollars after saying it might raise prices on some of its products, including the Apple Watch and the Mac mini, in response to the tariffs.

The Trump administration could soon announce tariffs on 200 billion dollars in goods imported from China and has threatened more taxes after that. The administration has already imposed tariffs on 50 billion dollars in Chinese products, which Beijing matched.

Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index tumbled 1.3%. After peaking in late January, it is close to entering a bear market. The MSCI Emerging Markets stock index has already breached that mark as major indexes in Turkey and Russia have also skidded.

Mr Frederick said the gap between rising US indexes and falling emerging markets indexes is unusual and cannot last for very long: either the difficulties in emerging markets will start to affect the rest of the world economy, potentially slowing US growth, or emerging markets will start improving.

CBS announced on Sunday that Mr Moonves is stepping down after six more women accused him of sexual misconduct as well as retaliation if they resisted him. He denied the charges although he said he had consensual relations with three of the women.

CBS fell 1.5% to 55.20 dollars. It has fallen 4% since the allegations against Mr Moonves surfaced in late July.

Alibaba fell 3.7% to 156.36 dollars. The company’s next chairman will be Daniel Zhang, who replaced Mr Ma as CEO in 2013.

Benchmark US crude fell 0.3% to 67.54 dollars a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, gained 0.7% to 77.37 dollars a barrel in London.

Wholesale gasoline dipped 0.5% to 1.96 dollars a gallon, heating oil stayed at 2.22 dollars a gallon, and natural gas rose 1% to 2.80 dollars per 1,000 cubic feet.

Bond prices were little changed. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note remained at 2.94%.

The dollar rose to 111.21 yen from 111.06 yen. The euro rose to 1.1597 dollars from 1.1566.

Gold was little changed at 1,199.80 dollars an ounce, silver rose 0.1% to 14.18 dollars an ounce, and copper inched up 0.2% to 2.63 dollars a pound.

Press Association

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