US Stocks Edge Higher; Garmin Bounces 17 Percent
Stocks are closing modestly higher on Wall Street, extending the market’s gains from a day earlier and more in Wednesday’s Stock Market Update.
Gains in technology, materials and energy companies outweighed losses in health care and real estate stocks.
Garmin, maker of fitness trackers and navigation technology, jumped 17 percent after reporting better sales.
CVS Health slumped 8.1 percent after the pharmacy operator gave a 2019 outlook that fell short of Wall Street’s expectations.
KEEPING SCORE: The S&P 500 rose 4 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,784.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 63 points, or 0.2 percent, to 25,954. The Nasdaq edged up 2 points, less than 0.1 percent, to 7,489.
Bond prices didn’t move much. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note was little changed at 2.64 percent.
THE QUOTE: The Fed minutes didn’t hold any big surprises for investors, who remain focused on the U.S.-China trade talks, noted Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at CFRA.
“They’re really sitting on pins and needles as it relates to the trade talks,” Stovall said.
TRADE TALKS: Negotiators for the U.S. and China resumed talks Tuesday following discussions in Beijing last week. U.S. officials said those talks made some progress on difficult issues such as China’s blueprint for making its industries world leaders in advanced technologies such as robotics and artificial intelligence.
The Trump administration has raised tariffs on billions of dollars’ worth of Chinese goods and the U.S. is due to increase them on March 2, following a 90-day truce to allow time for the negotiations now underway. President Donald Trump has indicated the deadline might be extended if progress is being made.
Vice Premier Liu He, China’s economy czar, was due to arrive in Washington on Thursday, China’s state media reported, after two days of preliminary talks by lower-level officials.
FEELING FIT: Shares in Garmin jumped 16.7 percent after reporting better sales and profit margins in the fourth quarter. The company’s latest forecast came in ahead of financial analysts’ projections. The stock led all others in the consumer discretionary sector, which includes retailers, automakers and restaurant chains.
GET COMFORTABLE: La-Z-Boy surged 11 percent after the furniture company’s latest quarterly earnings and revenue exceeded analysts’ forecasts. The company benefited from higher average spending. Recent acquisitions also helped boost La-Z-Boy’s results.
SOLID QUARTER: Cadence Design Systems climbed 4.6 percent after the software and engineering services company’s latest quarterly results topped Wall Street’s forecasts. The stock was among the technology sectors’ biggest gainers.
UNDER THE WEATHER: CVS Health slumped 8 percent after the pharmacy operator issued a 2019 outlook that fell short of analysts’ estimates. CEO Larry Merlo said in a prepared statement that 2019 would be “a year of transition” as the company integrates the health insurer Aetna, which it purchased in a roughly $69 billion deal last year. A federal judge is still evaluating the acquisition.
ENERGY: Oil prices rebounded after an early slide. U.S. benchmark crude rose 1.5 percent to settle at $56.92 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the standard for international oil prices, gained 0.9 percent to close at $67.08 a barrel in London.
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