Published: Mon, August 13, 2018
Markets | By Noel Gibbs

Wall Street flat as trade tensions mute earnings optimism

Wall Street flat as trade tensions mute earnings optimism

Lagging shares were Nuvista Energy Ltd., down 10.7 per cent, Uni-Select Inc, down 6.6 per cent, and Bausch Health Companies Inc., lower by 5.3 per cent.

The S&P 500 and Dow had ended down slightly on Thursday as gains in Apple and Amazon were offset by losses in energy and financial shares.

The S&P 500 index slipped after coming within spitting distance of a record high following a four-day rise.

The industrial index fell 0.3 percent as a drop in shares of trade-sensitive stocks such as Boeing and Caterpillar dragged.

The Nasdaq is up 988.39 points, or 14.3 per cent.

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At 2:47 p.m. (1847 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI was down 270.25 points, or 1.06 percent, to 25,238.98, the S&P 500 .SPX had lost 25.21 points, or 0.88 percent, to 2,828.37 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC had dropped 65.17 points, or 0.83 percent, to 7,826.61. It was down 29.07 points, or 0.11 percent, at 25,554.68.

Entering Thursday's session, the S&P 500 was just half a percent away from reaching 2872.87, a record high set on January 26.

However, chip stocks fell after Morgan Stanley downgraded the USA semiconductor industry, saying upside to estimates is hard to come by.

Second quarter earnings are expected to increase 23.5 per cent from the same period past year.

The S&P gains came as the latest data pointed to strength in the labor market, underscoring the health of the US economy despite ongoing trade tensions.

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Shares in leading United States banks also plunged significantly with Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, and J.P. Morgan Chase all falling over one percent. The number of Tesla shares sold short rebounded and are now higher than before Chief Executive Elon Musk on Tuesday proposed taking the electric auto maker private, according to data from financial technology and analytics firm S3 Partners.

About 6.7 billion shares changing hands on USA exchanges.

"There is low volatility in the markets as the S&P and Nasdaq are just below all-time record highs, and it seems like markets are complacent right now".

Declining issues outnumbered advancers for a 1.55-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and for a 1.20-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

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