Stocks are closing mostly higher on Wall Street, extending gains for the S&P 500 index into a second day while the Dow dipped to a loss and more in Tuesday’s Stock Market Update.
Technology and health care stocks did the most to pull the market higher Tuesday. Apple and UnitedHealth each rose 1.1 percent.
Another big loss in Boeing pulled the Dow Jones Industrial Average lower for the second day running.
Boeing lost 6.1 percent after many countries grounded the Boeing plane involved in the Ethiopian Airlines crash Sunday or banned it from their airspace.
The gains this week have helped the market reclaim the momentum it had in January and February, when it posted the best two-month start to a year since 1991. Despite stocks posting their worst week since December last week, the S&P 500 and Nasdaq are showing double-digits gains for the year so far, and the Dow is up by more than 9 percent.
Investors are still waiting for more details on any potential trade deal between the U.S. and China. Costly tariffs have hurt both nations and investors hope a deal can be struck to at least take some pressure off the global economy, which has shown signs of cooling off.
STOCK MARKET UPDATE
ANALYST’S TAKE: A report showing that U.S. consumer prices rose modestly last month also helped lift stocks. The report is the latest evidence that inflation remains muted, which gives the Federal Reserve more flexibility in holding off on further interest rate increases, said Eric Wiegand, senior portfolio manager for Private Wealth Management at U.S. Bank.
“The markets are reflecting a more favorable interpretation of the shift in central bank policies,” he said. “They’re creating more of a favorable backdrop.”
KEEPING SCORE: The S&P 500 index rose 8 points, or 0.3 percent, to 2,791. The Dow lost 96 points, or 0.4 percent, to 25,554. The Nasdaq rose 32 points, or 0.4 percent, to 7,591. Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.60 percent.
BOEING GROUNDED: The airplane maker faced a second day of losses as more countries grounded its 737 Max 8 following a second deadly crash. The stock slid 7.5 percent.
Britain joined a growing number of countries to ground the plane. Australia and Singapore suspended all flights into or out of their countries. Airlines in China and Indonesia, Aeromexico, Brazil’s Gol Airlines, India’s Jet Airways and others have done the same.
The crash of the Ethiopian Airlines 737 Max 8 on Sunday killed 157 people. A similar Lion Air plane crashed in Indonesia in October, killing 189 people.
STYLISH NUMBERS: Personal styling service Stitch Fix surged 25.9 percent after blowing past analyst’s expectations for the fourth-quarter.
The company, which sells clothing and apparel through its website, earned 12 cents per share while analysts expected 5 cents per share. It recorded an 18 percent increase in clients during the quarter and expects up to a 27 percent rise in revenue this year.
BAD SPORT: Dick’s Sporting Goods’ plunged 11 percent after the company reported a slide in sales during the fourth quarter and a weak forecast. A key sales figure fell 2.2 percent in the period, worse than what analysts were expecting.
HIGH WITH ANTICIPATION: Marijuana stocks rose after New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy and legislative leaders said they’ve agreed on legislation to legalize recreational marijuana for adults. The agreement comes after more than a year of negotiations.
Tilray gained 2.8 percent, while Canopy Growth added 2.9 percent.
VERY CONVENIENT: Casey’s General Stores rose 1.4 percent after the convenience store chain reported earnings that easily beat analyst’s forecasts.
OVERSEAS: Stocks in Europe finished mixed amid investor concerns that Britain faces a messy exit from the European Union.
Britain is set to leave the 27-member European Union on March 29. The House of Commons is scheduled to vote on a deal later Tuesday. But Attorney General Geoffrey Cox dealt a blow to the recent proposed deal with a legal opinion. The two-page opinion said the U.K. could still not extract itself from the deal unilaterally.
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