Sunday, February 25, 2024

Stocks rise broadly in early trading following dismal week

by BIZ Magazine

By DAMIAN J. TROISE AP Business Writer

Stocks rose broadly in early trading on Wall Street Monday as investors try to shake off the market’s biggest weekly drop since June.

Most sectors in the benchmark S&P 500 contributed to the gains and roughly 70% of companies within the index moved higher. Energy companies and banks were particularly strong and led the gains. Health care stocks and a mix of companies that rely on direct consumer spending fell.

The S&P 500 rose 0.1% as of 10:10 a.m. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 187 points, or 0.5%, to 34,794 and the Nasdaq fell 0.5%.

The price of U.S. crude oil rose 1.7% and crossed back above $70. It hasn’t closed above that level since early August. Natural gas prices jumped 5.1%. The solid gains helped lift energy stocks, including a 2.1% rise for Exxon Mobil and a 2.6% rise for Cabot Oil & Gas.

Bond yields edged lower. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 1.32% from 1.34% late Friday.

Several key pieces of news helped lift some companies and sectors.

Spirit Aerosystems, which is a key parts supplier to Boeing, rose 1.5% following the announcement of more government support for the industry. The Biden administration is making $482 million available to aviation industry manufacturers to help them avert job or pay cuts in the pandemic. Parker-Hannifin rose 0.9%.

Kansas City Southern rose 1.4% and Canadian Pacific gained 1.6% after Kansas City said a $31 billion bid from Canadian Pacific is the best of two offers to buy the railroad. The rival bidder, Canadian National, is also facing pressure from an investor who wants CN to drop its offer.

TransUnion fell 1.4% following a report that it was nearing a deal to buy data services company Neustar.

Investors have been dealing with choppy trading for weeks as they try to assess how the economic recovery moves forward with rising COVID-19 cases hurting consumer spending and employment growth, while raising prices on goods.

Wall Street will have several key pieces of data to review this week. The Labor Department will release its consumer price index for August on Tuesday, which will give investors another update on inflation as businesses and consumers face higher prices because of supply constraints.

The Commerce Department will release retail sales data for August on Thursday to a market still trying to determine the full impact of rising COVID-19 cases on consumer spending.

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