Off The Wire
Trade optimism, Disney push Wall Street to new high
(Reuters) - Wall Street’s three main indexes held steady near all-time highs on Tuesday, as positive comments on trade by President Donald Trump, along with gains for Disney and Best Buy, encouraged investors to shrug off weak economic data.
The United States was in the “final throes” in its attempt to reach a deal with China, Trump said, although he added Washington stood with protesters in Hong Kong, a sore point with Beijing.
Walt Disney Co (DIS.N) gained 2.2% after a report that its streaming service was averaging nearly a million new subscribers a day. The stock propped up the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the benchmark S&P 500.
Rising trade truce hopes, upbeat domestic economic indicators and a third-quarter corporate earnings season that has largely topped lowered expectations have put the market back on an upward track after a torrid summer.
“When you take a look at all the (trade) comments that have come out, the markets have reacted a little bit to it, but it certainly creates a positive bias,” said Paul Nolte, portfolio manager at Kingsview Asset Management in Chicago.
“The second part is that Thanksgiving week tends to be positive for stocks as well.”
The three interest rate cuts by the Federal Reserve this year have also boosted risk appetite, and Fed Chair Jerome Powell said on Monday monetary policy was “well positioned” to support the strong labor market.
However, concerns over the strength of the U.S. consumer returned after data on Tuesday showed the Conference Board’s U.S. consumer confidence index missed analysts’ projections. Commerce Department data showed an unexpected drop in new home sales last month.
Eight of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors were higher. The consumer discretionary sector .SPLRCD, rose 0.69%, and provided the biggest boost, powered by a 12.1% jump in shares of Best Buy Co Inc (BBY.N) following a strong holiday-quarter profit forecast.
But Dollar Tree Inc (DLTR.O) tumbled 16.7% after it projected holiday-quarter profit below estimates, signaling the fallout from the trade dispute.
Best Buy was the top gainer on the S&P 500, while Dollar Tree was among the biggest drags on the S&P and the Nasdaq.
At 1:13 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI was up 29.36 points, or 0.10%, at 28,095.83, whil the S&P 500 .SPX was up 4.99 points, or 0.16%, at 3,138.63. The Nasdaq Composite .IXIC was up 22.09 points, or 0.26%, at 8,654.57.
Among other stocks, Hewlett Packard Enterprise Co (HPE.N) fell 8.5% as the enterprise software maker missed fourth-quarter revenue estimates.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 1.30-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and by a 1.14-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
The S&P index recorded 30 new 52-week highs and no new low, while the Nasdaq recorded 99 new highs and 51 new lows.
Reporting by Arjun Panchadar in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila