Dow Industrials Turn Higher Following Trump's Swearing In As President

WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. stocks edged higher in midday trading Friday following Donald Trump's swearing in as the 45th president of the United States. Phone company stocks led the gainers. Materials and energy companies also rose. Industrial, utilities and health care stocks headed lower. Investors were also weighing the latest batch of company earnings and outlooks.

 

KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average rose 31 points, or 0.2 percent, to 19,763 as of 12:35 p.m. Eastern Time. The Dow is coming off five straight losses. The Standard & Poor's 500 index gained 2 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,265. The Nasdaq composite index added 4 points, or 0.1 percent, to 5,544.

THE QUOTE: An overall improvement in quarterly results so far this corporate earnings season as well as optimism over the Trump inauguration helped lift stocks, said Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at CFRA Research.

         "Historically, the market has performed best in the November-April time frame," Stovall said. "The Trump victory added a tailwind to this traditional seasonal factor."

TRUMP'S INAUGURATION: The major stock indexes pulled back slightly as Trump delivered remarks after taking the oath of office. Stocks have slowed in 2017 after surging for several weeks following Election Day on investor optimism that a Trump administration and Republican congress would usher in business-friendly policies. But the possibility of increased tariffs or trade restrictions could also mean drops in profits for big U.S. companies.

         Since 1953, starting with President Dwight D. Eisenhower's inauguration, the S&P 500 has risen an average of 1.6 percent in the first 100 days of a president's first term in office, Stovall noted.

 

STRONG RESULTS: Skyworks Solutions jumped 11.8 percent after the semiconductor products maker reported better-than-anticipated quarterly results. The stock was the biggest gainer in the S&P 500, adding $9.29 to $87.75.

BRIGHT OUTLOOK: Consumer goods maker Procter & Gamble rose 2.6 percent after releasing a strong growth forecast. The stock added $2.16 to $86.86.

EXCEEDING EXPECTATIONS: Citizens Financial Group gained 2.5 percent after reporting fourth-quarter earnings and revenue that beat analysts' expectations. The stock rose 88 cents to $35.61.

GOOD CALL: AT&T rose 1.5 percent after the phone company reported strong subscriber numbers. The stock added 62 cents to $41.62.

NOT GOOD ENOUGH: General Electric slid 1.8 percent after the conglomerate reported fourth-quarter revenue that fell short of analysts' forecasts. The stock gave up 56 cents to $30.65.

BIG DECLINER: TransDigm Group was down the most among stocks in the S&P 500. It slumped $27.65, or 11 percent, to $224.11.

SLOW APPROACH: Bristol-Myers Squibb slumped 10.2 percent after the drugmaker said it won't pursue accelerated regulatory approval for a lung cancer treatment. The stock lost $5.66 to $49.84.

MARKETS OVERSEAS: Germany's DAX rose 0.3 percent, while France's CAC 40 was 0.2 percent higher. Britain's FTSE 100 was down 0.1 percent. In Asia, Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 0.7 percent after the Chinese government said the economy grew at a 6.8 percent annual rate in the last quarter, even as full-year growth increased 6.7 percent, the weakest in three decades. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 index rose 0.3 percent.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude was up $1.19, or 2.3 percent, at $52.56 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, was up $1.37, or 2.5 percent, at $55.53 a barrel in London.

BONDS: Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.49 percent from 2.47 percent late Thursday. Yields have been rising as investors expect inflation to increase.

CURRENCIES: The dollar fell to 114.73 yen from Thursday's 114.80. The euro rose to $1.0678 from $1.0659.

 

         – by AP Reporter Alex Veiga

 

 

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