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US STOCKS-Wall Street scales new heights, powered by tech stocks

US STOCKS-Wall Street scales new heights, powered by tech stocks

reuters.com · 09/01/2021 14:12
US STOCKS-Wall Street scales new heights, powered by tech stocks

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Tech stocks lead gains; Apple hits record high

August private jobs growth misses expectations

PVH Corp top S&P 500 gainer on raising full-year forecast

Indexes gain: Dow 0.01%, S&P 0.29%, Nasdaq 0.76%

Updates prices, adds energy content

By Shashank Nayar and David French

- Wall Street's main indexes marched on, with the S&P 500 and Nasdaq hitting record highs on Wednesday, as fresh technology stock buying combined with hopes the Federal Reserve would keep the stimulus taps open after weaker-than-expected private payrolls data.

Technology stocks .SPLRCT, which tend to benefit from a low-rate environment, were up 0.5%. Apple Inc AAPL.O rose 1.2% to its second record high this week, and Microsoft Corp MSFT.O, Amazon.com Inc AMZN.O and Google-owner Alphabet Inc GOOGL.O all advanced between 0.4% and 1.4%.

Sectors considered as bond-proxies or defensive including utilities .SPLRCU, consumer discretionary .SPLRCD and real estate .SPLRCR were also among the top performers, rising between 0.5% and 1.6%.

A report by ADP, published ahead of the U.S. government's more comprehensive employment report on Friday, showed private employers hired far fewer workers than expected in August. nN9N2NL019

"Information on inflation with regard to jobs and wages is something that will be an important factor affecting Fed decisions rather than demand and supply side issues, which is why the Friday jobs data will set the stage for the Fed's September meeting," said Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager at Globalt Investments in Atlanta.

Wall Street's main indexes have hit record highs recently, with the benchmark S&P 500 .SPX notching a solid 20.8% gain so far this year as investors shrugged off risks around a rise in new coronavirus infections and hoped for the Fed to remain dovish in its policy stance.

Another set of data on Wednesday showed U.S. manufacturing activity unexpectedly picked up in August amid strong order growth, but a measure of factory employment dropped to a nine-month low, likely as workers remained scarce. nL1N2Q30WG

Surveys earlier in the day showed Asian and European factory activity lost momentum last month as the coronavirus pandemic disrupted supply chains. nL1N2Q30FL

By 1:51 p.m. ET (1751 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI rose 3.62 points, or 0.01%, to 35,364.35, the S&P 500 .SPX gained 13.16 points, or 0.29%, to 4,535.84 and the Nasdaq Composite .IXIC added 116.35 points, or 0.76%, to 15,375.59.

While the majority of sectors were in positive territory, the energy Index .SPNY declined 1.4%, heading for its third straight fall.

Oil prices edged lower after OPEC and its allies agreed to stick to their existing policy of gradual output increases, while the impact of Hurricane Ida is still being established. Analysts have warned that restarting Louisiana refineries shut by the storm could take weeks and cost operators tens of millions of dollars in lost revenue. O/R nL1N2Q30XA

PBF Energy Inc PBF.N, whose 190,000 barrel-per-day Chalmette, Louisiana, refinery lost power following the storm, was down 7% on Wednesday, taking its decline this week to 11.4%.

Shares of Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger owner PVH Corp PVH.N surged 14.6% to the top of the S&P 500 after it raised its full-year earnings forecast. nL4N2Q243C

Maker of Prego pasta sauces, Campbell Soup Co CPB.N rose 1.4% even as it forecast fiscal 2022 profit and sales below market expectations due to a slowdown in demand and higher raw material costs. nL4N2Q32G8

The S&P 500 posted 52 new 52-week highs and no new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 117 new highs and 13 new lows.

U.S. private payrolls miss expectations in August -ADPnN9N2NL019

U.S. manufacturing activity rises; shortages lingernL1N2Q30WG

GLOBAL ECONOMY-Factories hit by pandemic-related supply disruptionsnL1N2Q30FL

(Reporting by Shashank Nayar in Bengaluru and David French in New York; Editing by Aditya Soni and Lisa Shumaker)

((Shashank.Nayar@thomsonreuters.com; within U.S. +1 646 223 8780; outside U.S. +91 80 6182 2256;))