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US STOCKS-Apple, Broadcom keep Wall Street gains in check

Reuters | New York | Updated: 13-09-2019 23:00 IST | Created: 13-09-2019 22:59 IST
US STOCKS-Apple, Broadcom keep Wall Street gains in check
Image Credit: Public Domain Pictures

Losses in shares of U.S. technology majors Apple and Broadcom held the S&P 500 just under record levels on Friday, as traders balanced the latest indicators of an uncertain global growth outlook with perceived progress in Sino-U.S. trade relations.

Broadcom Inc, among the world's biggest chipmakers, weighed on the tech-heavy Nasdaq with a 2.6% fall, after it said in results late on Thursday that demand for microchips had bottomed out and that a recovery was not yet on the cards. That pointed to more headwinds for tech companies buffeted this year by the trade conflict. Technology stocks fell 0.6% and were the biggest drag among the 11 major S&P sectors.

Apple fell 2.3% after Goldman Sachs cut its price target for the stock, citing concerns over its new Apple TV+ service. Adding to the high-growth tech sector's losses, a U.S. House of Representatives panel demanded internal emails and other records from Apple and other technology giants - Amazon.com Inc. , Facebook Inc and Alphabet Inc.

All of the FAANG stocks, apart from Netflix Inc came under pressure. Still, the S&P 500's marginal gains brought it to within 0.6% of its record high, with financial stocks providing the biggest boost.

Banks followed U.S. Treasury yields higher after data showed U.S. retail sales rose 0.4% in August, lifted by spending on cars, building materials, healthcare and hobbies. Economists polled by Reuters had forecast an increase of 0.2%. The blue-chip Dow Industrial Average was also within 0.6% of its all-time high and was set for its eighth straight session of gains to match a winning streak from May 2018.

"It's natural for the market to take a pause here given the recent trading in the last few days," said Keith Buchanan, portfolio manager at GlobAlt in Atlanta. "To break through from this point, there probably needs to be some incremental news from a global growth perspective or more meaningful developments on trade."

Trade worries were soothed this week after tariff concessions from both the United States and China, and President Donald Trump's latest comments that he was potentially open to an interim trade deal with China. However, doubts about U.S. growth remain, with the International Monetary Fund forecasting that the tit-for-tat tariffs could reduce global GDP in 2020 by 0.8%.

At 1:09 p.m. ET the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 47.02 points, or 0.17%, at 27,229.47, the S&P 500 was up 0.80 points, or 0.03%, at 3,010.37 and the Nasdaq Composite was down 11.42 points, or 0.14%, at 8,183.05. Tyson Foods Inc, the United States' largest meat processor, rose 2.5% after China's official Xinhua News Agency said the country would exempt some U.S. pork and soybeans from additional tariffs on U.S. goods.

The defensive healthcare, real estate and consumer staples sectors were among the laggards on the S&P 500. Advancing issues outnumbered decliners for a 1.04-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 1.44-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

The S&P index recorded 19 new 52-week highs and one new low, while the Nasdaq recorded 74 new highs and 16 new lows.

Also Read: Apple to supply parts to independent repair shops for first time



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