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US open: Stocks grind higher, with focus on Apple and tax reforms

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US open: Stocks grind higher, with focus on Apple and tax reforms

Tue, 12 September 2017
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(ShareCast News) - Wall Street continued to grind higher as investors eyed the latest iPhone release against a backdrop of renewed 'market chatter' regarding prospects for tax reforms in the States before 2017 was out.
At 1545 BST, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was 0.18% or 40.49 points higher to 22,095.89 alongside a gain of 0.12% or 2.79 points to 2,490.90 for the S & P 500, whereas the Nasdaq Composite was flat at 6,433.50.

Property & Casualty insurers were again a source of strength as traders rushed to rebuy shares in the punished sector, as initial tallies of the damage wreaked by Hurricane Irma fell short of analysts' most downbeat predictions.

Banks were also adding to the prior session's gains, with the KBW sector gauge up by 1.38% to 93.27.

According to Hassan Kanaan, senior research associate at Royal Financial/RFXT in Beirut: "Today's focus will all be on technological stocks as Apple is set to unveil its newest iPhone, entitled iPhone X, which will feature facial recognition as well many new aesthetics and new improvements to the already existing features it has. However, with a price tag of $1,000, it will be very difficult for customers, in the current market, to fork up a four-digit sum for the newest phone, no matter how 'cool' it is."

In other news, speaking at the Delivering Alpha conference hosted by CNBC and Institutional Investors, US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin insisted the White House would deliver on tax reform before the end of 2017.

Furthermore, according to President Donald Trump's point man for finance, the US administration was debating making the reforms retroactive to 1 January, in order to boost growth.

To take note of, earlier in the session Bank of America-Merrill Lynch published the results of its latest Fund Manager Survey, which showed that a majority of managers believed shares could remain in 'Icarus' or upside mode.

That was thanks to investors having pared their forecasts for rising government bond yields, BofA-Merrill said. As opposed to the 26% of of managers who were expecting "much higher" bond yields last November, now only 5% were projecting such a scenario. To back up their conclusion, BofA-Merrill pointed to a low 'overweight' in stocks and the smallest 'underweight' in bonds since November 2016.

Aside from Apple, Tesla was also in the market spotlight on the heels of a Bloomberg report that federal investigators were set to recommend that its autopilot feature be declared a contributing factor in a fatal car crash in May 2016.

Teva Pharmaceuticals was higher too after the company announced late on Monday that it was selling its Pargard IUD product to Cooper Cos for $1.1bn.

Also on the data front, the number of job openings in the States was at 6.2m at the end of July, easily outpacing forecasts for a reading of 5.92m, according to the Federal Reserve's JOLTS survey.

In parallel, the NFIB reported a 0.1 point rise in its small business confidence gauge for August to 105.3 (consensus: 105.0).

Dow Jones - Risers

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) $225.38 1.95%
Pfizer Inc. (PFE) $34.73 1.20%
Intel Corp. (INTC) $36.17 1.13%
Verizon Communications Inc. (VZ) $46.81 1.10%
JP Morgan Chase & Co. (JPM) $90.53 0.82%
Nike Inc. (NKE) $53.45 0.79%
Home Depot Inc. (HD) $159.57 0.76%
American Express Co. (AXP) $86.31 0.72%
Caterpillar Inc. (CAT) $119.72 0.72%
Cisco Systems Inc. (CSCO) $32.39 0.62%

Dow Jones - Fallers

McDonald's Corp. (MCD) $157.13 -2.72%
Unitedhealth Group Inc. (UNH) $198.48 -0.55%
Procter & Gamble Co. (PG) $93.48 -0.54%
Travelers Company Inc. (TRV) $122.05 -0.42%
Apple Inc. (AAPL) $160.85 -0.41%
Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) $74.57 -0.25%
Chevron Corp. (CVX) $112.38 -0.12%
Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) $133.10 -0.08%
Boeing Co. (BA) $240.50 -0.04%
Visa Inc. (V) $106.12 -0.03%

S&P 500 - Risers

Southwestern Energy Co. (SWN) $5.76 6.47%
Range Resources Corp. (RRC) $17.90 5.48%
Gap Inc. (GPS) $27.14 4.63%
Perrigo Company plc (PRGO) $88.89 4.48%
L Brands Inc (LB) $39.45 4.09%
Comerica Inc. (CMA) $68.91 3.24%
Citizens Financial Group, Inc. (CFG) $34.50 3.11%
Alcoa Corporation (AA) $44.95 3.10%
Frontier Communications Co. (FTR) $13.71 2.93%
GameStop Corp. (GME) $19.75 2.89%

S&P 500 - Fallers

United States Steel Corp. (X) $26.02 -3.13%
Nucor Corp. (NUE) $52.34 -3.02%
McKesson Corp. (MCK) $154.84 -2.76%
McDonald's Corp. (MCD) $157.13 -2.72%
Anthem Inc (ANTM) $191.56 -2.24%
Public Storage (PSA) $208.88 -2.12%
Ameren Corp. (AEE) $59.77 -1.88%
Electronic Arts Inc. (EA) $119.24 -1.61%
Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ALXN) $140.68 -1.57%
Salesforce.Com Inc. (CRM) $96.22 -1.52%

Nasdaq 100 - Risers

Ross Stores Inc. (ROST) $60.54 2.14%
Paychex Inc. (PAYX) $58.48 2.01%
Comcast Corp. (CMCSA) $38.57 1.96%
Seagate Technology Plc (STX) $31.43 1.55%
PACCAR Inc. (PCAR) $68.70 1.48%
Liberty Interactive Corporation QVC Group (QVCA) $23.02 1.41%
Micron Technology Inc. (MU) $33.90 1.36%
Liberty Interactive Corporation - Series A Liberty Ventures (LVNTA) $59.84 1.15%
Intel Corp. (INTC) $36.17 1.13%
Dollar Tree Inc (DLTR) $84.25 1.02%

Nasdaq 100 - Fallers

Incyte Corp. (INCY) $122.36 -2.07%
Electronic Arts Inc. (EA) $119.24 -1.61%
Alexion Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ALXN) $140.68 -1.57%
Twenty-First Century Fox Inc Class B (FOX) $25.30 -1.46%
Twenty-First Century Fox Inc Class A (FOXA) $25.68 -1.46%
Express Scripts Holding Co (ESRX) $62.80 -1.36%
Liberty Global Plc Lilac Class A (LILA) $25.27 -1.35%
Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. (CHKP) $111.31 -1.23%
Intuit Inc. (INTU) $140.92 -1.21%
Citrix Systems Inc. (CTXS) $75.41 -1.14%

NASDAQ 100 Top Risers

Name Last Chg.% Time
T-Mobile Us, Inc. 64.71 4.71 16:07
Hasbro Inc 95.61 2.54 16:07
Mattel Inc. 15.13 1.75 16:07
Wynn Resorts Ltd. 146.32 1.72 16:07
KLA-Tencor Corp. 102.32 1.40 16:07

NASDAQ 100 Top Fallers

Name Last Chg.% Time
Seagate Technology Plc 31.90 -4.83 16:07
Tesla Inc 375.12 -2.57 16:07
Western Digital Corp. 87.02 -2.42 16:07
O'Reilly Automotive Inc. 205.54 -2.16 16:07
Expedia Inc. 139.22 -2.07 16:07