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US STOCKS-S&P 500, Dow edge higher as Gilead data offsets virus concerns – Reuters

The S&P 500 and the Dow advanced on Friday as a positive update from Gilead’s antiviral drug to treat COVID-19 countered nerves over a record rise in coronavirus cases in the United States that threatens to damage Corporate America.

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(For a live blog on the U.S. stock market, click or type LIVE/ in a news window.)
* Nasdaq eases from record closing high
* Carnival rises on plan to resume trips in phases
* Netflix rises after Goldman Sachs PT raise
* Dow rises 0.75%, S&P up 0.39%, Nasdaq down 0.03% (Updates to early afternoon)
By Medha Singh and C Nivedita
July 10 (Reuters) – The S&P 500 and the Dow advanced on Friday as a positive update from Gilead’s antiviral drug to treat COVID-19 countered nerves over a record rise in coronavirus cases in the United States that threatens to damage Corporate America.
Gilead’s remdesivir significantly improved clinical recovery and reduced the risk of death in COVID-19 patients, additional data from a late-stage study showed. The drugmaker’s shares rose 2.1% as it said the finding required confirmation in clinical trials.
The United States registered the largest single-day increase in new COVID-19 infections globally for the second day in a row on Thursday, forcing Americans to take new precautions. Several states have already backpedaled on reopening plans.
“This market is psychologically focused on coronavirus news, and it’s a battle of positive news stories versus negative news stories,” said Mike Zigmont, head of trading and research at Harvest Volatility Management in New York.
A slate of economic data, including a record monthly payrolls addition, has pointed to a revival in business activity in June, fueling the U.S. stock market’s stimulus-driven rally.
The S&P 500 has risen more than 40% from its March lows and stands about 8% below its record high hit in February.
Technology stocks weakened, dragging the Nasdaq from its third record closing high this week.
Bank of America Corp, Citigroup Inc, JPMorgan Chase & Co and Goldman Sachs rose between 3.2% and 3.8% ahead of their financial results next week, which would mark the onset of the second-quarter earnings season.
Overall profits for S&P 500 firms are expected to plunge the most since the financial crisis, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.
“With the earnings expectations so low, investors are of the mindset that they will more likely be exceeded rather than fall even further,” said Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at CFRA Research.
At 12:48 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 191.83 points, or 0.75%, at 25,897.92, the S&P 500 was up 12.25 points, or 0.39%, at 3,164.30. The Nasdaq Composite was down 2.73 points, or 0.03%, at 10,545.02.
Carnival Corp jumped 8.4% after the cruise line operator said it was planning to resume operations in a phased manner and would operate with a smaller fleet on its return.
Netflix Inc rose 6.5% after Goldman Sachs hiked its price target on the video streaming service’s shares.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 2.17-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and by a 1.40-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
The S&P index recorded 15 new 52-week highs and no new low, while the Nasdaq recorded 67 new highs and 16 new lows. (Reporting by Medha Singh and C Nivedita in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva and Maju Samuel)

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UK employment sees largest quarterly fall in a decade – CNBC

The decrease in employment in the U.K. between April and June was the largest quarterly fall since 2009, according to official data.

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Employment in the U.K. has seen its largest quarterly fall in over a decade, according to official data published Tuesday.
The Office for National Statistics said estimates show 32.92 million people were in employment between April and June, 113,000 more than a year before, but 220,000 fewer than the previous quarter.
This decrease in employment, which affected both men and women, was the largest quarterly fall since May to July 2009.
Data for July showed that the number of employees on payro…

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Hungry Jack’s closes Ballarat CBD, Wendouree stores after staff member tests positive to COVID-19 – ABC News

Fast food giant Hungry Jack’s closes two stores in the regional Victorian city after a staff member tests positive.

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Fast food giant Hungry Jack’s has closed two stores in the regional Victorian city Ballarat and workers have gone into quarantine after a staff member tested positive to COVID-19.
Key points:

  • Staff member at Hungry Jack’s in Ballarat tests positive to COVID-19
  • Two stores have closed as a result in Ballarat
  • Union says the fast food chain needs to provide more information

In a statement, the retailer said it had temporarily closed its Ballarat CBD and Wendoure…

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New A2 Milk CEO must buy before selling – The Australian Financial Review

A2 Milk’s last chief executive took some by surprise when she unexpectedly sold shares. Now they’ve named a replacement, the company is making sure that mistake won’t be repeated.

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He will receive a base salary of $1.75 million, including superannuation, and may receive a short-term incentive payment of 120 per cent of his fixed base salary in his first year, though performance objectives have yet to be determined.
On an annual basis, he will be able to take up performance rights under the long-term incentive plan equivalent to 160 per cent of his fixed remuneration. These will vest over three years, with conditions to be determined. Mr Bortolussi will receive an addition…

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