U.S. stocks brush off year's first wobble, return to records

Jeannie Matthews
January 13, 2018

DIVIDENDS DULLED: Telecom stocks and utilities lagged well behind the market.

"There shouldn't be a falling-off-the-cliff mentality, but we're so primed", she said.

Optimism about a strengthening global economy and growing corporate profits have helped propel markets even though stocks have become more expensive than they've historically been relative to earnings. "We're 30 years into this, waiting for the trigger". The last time the index led off a year with more consecutive gains was in 2010, when it had six.

The Dow Jones industrial average lost 19 points, or 0.1 percent, to 25,366. The Russell 2000 index of small-cap stocks edged up 1.80 to 1,561.81.

The S&P consumer discretionary index.SPLRCD jumped 0.78 percent after an increase in retail sales showed households bought more goods, suggesting the economy exited 2017 with strong momentum.

A stellar start for the New Year on Wall Street has faded as the market posted its first loss of the year.

That helped drive energy stocks in the S&P 500 to a 2 percent gain, the largest among the 11 sectors that make up the index. They more than made up their losses from the prior day. The report triggered sell-offs of US government bonds and the yield on the 10-year Treasury reached its highest level since March at one point before pulling back.

Nvidia climbed 3.1% to $222 after the chip maker said it will work with Uber to develop the computing system for a fleet of autonomous cars.

On the losing end was Facebook, which fell after the social-media giant said it will show users fewer posts from brands and fewer videos in favor of more posts from friends and family.

JPMorgan (JPM.N), the biggest USA lender by assets, said the new tax law would help future profits by not only reducing the amount it pays the federal government but also by stimulating more business.

Dave & Buster's Entertainment dived 22.3% to $43.79 after the restaurant and arcade chain said sales worsened in December and it cut its income and sales forecasts.

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The company was maintained on Monday, May 2 by Deutsche Bank. (NYSE:C) earned "Sell" rating by UBS on Wednesday, January 11. BidaskClub upgraded shares of EXACT Sciences from a "hold" rating to a "buy" rating in a report on Thursday, December 21st.

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Meanwhile, the fourth-quarter earnings season is set to begin this week. "Given where global growth is, we should have higher rates than we do today".

Stocks have been remarkably calm and strong for more than a year.

The dollar slipped to 111.09 yen from 111.35 yen. The euro was flat at $1.1948.

In the commodities markets, benchmark USA crude rose 50 cents to settle at $64.30 per barrel. Brent crude, the worldwide standard, rose 6 cents to $69.26 a barrel.

Amazon rose 1.8 percent and provided the biggest boost to the S&P and the Nasdaq.

Natural gas gained 12 cents to $3.20 per 1,000 cubic feet, heating oil added a penny to $2.09 per gallon and wholesale gasoline rose 1 cent to $1.85 per gallon.

In the commodities markets, gold rose $3.20 to settle at $1,322.50 an ounce. Silver fell 14 cents to $17.14 an ounce. Copper rose 2 cents to $3.23 a pound.

In markets overseas, Japan's Nikkei 225 index lost 0.2 percent, South Korea's Kospi advanced 0.3 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng jumped 0.9 percent. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong gained 0.3%. France's CAC 40 was down 0.3%.

Britain's FTSE 100 rose 0.2%.

This article was originally published at 1:20 p.m.

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