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US open: Stocks open stronger on anniversary of 1987 crash

By Iain Gilbert

Date: Friday 19 Oct 2018

US open: Stocks open stronger on anniversary of 1987 crash

(Sharecast News) - On the 31st anniversary of the 1987 stock-market crash, Wall Street trading began on a positive note as a rebound in Chinese equity benchmarks relieved some concerns regarding dwindling global growth, despite Beijing reporting the nation's softest rate of economic expansion in nearly a decade.
As of 1515 BST, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was 0.83% higher at 25,589.79, while the S&P 500 had picked up 0.97% to 2,795.71 and the Nasdaq was 1.23% firmer at 7,577.25.

The Dow Jones shot up 190 points after the bell, re-crossing 25,550 in the process, a price it has soared past and sank through several times throughout the week.

SpreadEx analyst Connor Campbell, said: "These gains appear to find their root in the rebound managed by the Shanghai Composite this morning, the index rising as regulators sought to reassure investors following the lowest Chinese GDP reading since the financial crisis."

Konstantinos Anthis, head of research at ADSS, said: "Even though the political agenda in Europe and the US is filled with risks investors seem to be looking for bargains at the end of the week."

"The earnings season is progressing well and this improves risk sentiment for equity investors that view the recent losses as an opportunity to buy promising stocks at a discount and target a long-term return."

Chinese growth figures were in focus as they showed that the economy slowed more than expected in the third quarter, with annualised GDP coming in at 6.5%, its weakest quarter since the Global Financial Crisis in 2009, and below expectations of 6.6%. Still, Chinese stocks China rallied after the regulator stepped in with fresh measures to support liquidity and investment.

"Growth of 6.5% rather than 6.6% is a pretty nice problem to have but the trade war with the US, higher debt levels and a depreciating currency remain a concern," said Neil Wilson, chief market analyst at

Investors were also keeping an eye on escalating tensions between the US and Saudi Arabia as Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced on Thursday his decision to pull-out of an investment conference in Riyadh following the disappearance of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Elsewhere, the US 10-year treasury yield increased 0.027 to 3.202%.

In corporate news, Honeywell crept forward 0.11% in early trade as its third-quarter profit beat expectations and the company lifted its forecasts for annual cash flow and margins.

PayPal surged 9.81% at the bell after the payment company's third-quarter earnings and revenue surpassed analysts' expectations.

However, eBay shares slumped 7.42% in early trading after analysts' downgraded it from 'buy' to 'hold' on the back of PayPal's earnings release, which suggested the online retailer would post disappointing gross merchandise volume when it reports on 30 October.

Consumer goods group Procter & Gamble was 7.48% higher after the release of its first-quarter numbers, and oilfield services company Schlumberger gained 4.59% at the open after its third-quarter earnings beat expectations, but missed on revenues.

AIG slipped 2.14% following the insurance giant's announcement that it expects to post $1.5bn to $1.7bn in pre-tax catastrophe losses, while American Express gained after it turned in third-quarter earnings that beat estimates, leading it lift its full-year outlook

On the data front, America's residential real estate markets continued to cool in September with activity slowing to a three-year low on the back of higher interest rates on mortgages.

According to the National Association of Realtors, existing home sales declined by 3.4% month-on-month to reach an annualised rate of 5.15m (consensus: 5.31m)

Last month's decline also pushed the pace of sales below its year-earlier level of 5.37m.

"A decade's high mortgage rates are preventing consumers from making quick decisions on home purchases. All the while, affordable home listings remain low, continuing to spur underperforming sales activity across the country," said NAR's chief economist, Lawrence Yun.

Home sales have fallen six months in a row as a lack of properties for sale has pushed up prices, forcing many would-be homeowners out of the game.

Elsewhere, Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic is set to speak at 1700 BST as part of an armchair discussion in Macon, Georgia.


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