Stocks rally on earnings a day after ending at 5-month lows

Economy & Business By: The Bullet Wire 12:45 pm

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are climbing Tuesday as investors were encouraged by solid earnings reports from several big U.S. companies.

Oreo maker Mondelez rose after reporting its latest quarterly results. Banks rose as interest rates climbed, and media companies also gained ground.

Real estate investment trusts moved higher. Traditionally seen as lower-risk, these high-dividend stocks have done far better than the rest of the market as trading turned volatile this month.

European stocks mostly fell following a report that the region’s economy slowed down in the third quarter.

KEEPING SCORE: The S&P 500 index added 30 points, or 1.2 percent, to 2,672 as of 3:15 p.m. Eastern time. On Monday the benchmark index closed at its lowest level since early May.

Trading remained uneven: the S&P 500 jumped Tuesday morning, then briefly turned lower in afternoon trading, then recovered.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 327 points, or 1.3 percent, to 24,770. The Nasdaq composite added 79 points, or 1.1 percent, to 7,129. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks rose 23 points, or 1.6 percent, to 1,500.

Stocks started Monday with strong gains, but those gradually faded and the market wound up with more losses after Bloomberg News reported that the Trump administration could announce tariffs on all remaining U.S. imports from China in early December if the two countries don’t make progress in trade talks.

THE QUOTE: Corporate earnings are up about 20 percent this year as the U.S. economy gains strength and corporate taxes come down after last year’s tax cut. Analysts expect company profits to keep growing in 2019, but at a slower pace.

Julian Emanuel, chief equity and derivative strategist for BTIG, said investors are worried about two things that could slow the economy further: the U.S.-China trade dispute, and the Federal Reserve raising interest rates.

“All of this fear about growth is being traded on something we don’t see in the statistics right now,” he said. “You factually don’t have signs of an economic slowdown yet.”

HOW SWEET IT IS: Mondelez gained 4.2 percent to $41.80 after its third-quarter profit surpassed analysts’ projections. The maker of Oreo cookies, Cadbury chocolate and Trident gum made up for some of its losses earlier this year.

Other companies that make and sell household goods also rose. Walmart added 2.5 percent to $102.32.

Among real estate investment trusts, wireless communications infrastructure company American Tower climbed 5 percent to $160.49 following its third-quarter report.

The S&P 500′s index of utilities has climbed 3 percent over the last month and household goods makers are up 2.6 percent. The broader S&P 500 has tumbled 8.4 percent over the same time.

GE GETS SHOCKED: General Electric cut its dividend again. The company had halved its dividend to 12 cents from 24 cents in December, and cut it to 1 cent Tuesday. The struggling industrial giant also said the Justice Department has opened a criminal investigation into a $22 billion charge it booked to its power business this year. Securities regulators were also conducting a civil probe.

The stock sank 10.2 percent to $10.03, its lowest price since early 2009.

RESET: Take-Two Interactive soared 11 percent to $123.96 after it said its new game “Red Dead Redemption 2″ brought in $725 million in retail sales over its first three days. The stock also surged Thursday, the day of the game’s release, but Take-Two shares are sharply lower this month as technology companies have been punished.

FAVORITES FALLEN: Stocks have taken steep losses this month, and some of the worst losses were sustained by longtime market favorites that had soared in recent months. Amazon has plunged 24 percent this month and Netflix is down almost 25 percent. But those companies had more to lose than many others did: Amazon is still up 30 percent this year, and Netflix has climbed 46 percent.

OVERSEAS: The economy of the 19-country eurozone unexpectedly slowed in the third quarter. It expanded by 0.2 percent in the July-September period, which fell short of analyst forecasts.

Experts say Europe was hurt by one-time factors like new emissions standards for cars, so growth is likely to pick up again. But they say it’s unlikely to match last year’s strong performance as the region faces issues like Britain’s departure from the EU, trade disputes and a clash with Italy over that country’s budget.

Germany’s DAX fell 0.4 percent and France’s CAC 40 lost 0.2 percent. Britain’s FTSE 100 added 0.1 percent.

A weakening of the Chinese yuan helped some stock indexes in Asia. Japan’s Nikkei 225 index jumped 1.5 percent after official data showed that the unemployment rate dipped to 2.3 percent in September. South Korea’s Kospi picked up 0.9 percent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng fell 0.9 percent.

BONDS: Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 3.11 percent from 3.08 percent.

ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude shed 1.3 percent to $66.18 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, lost 1.8 percent to $75.91 per barrel in London.

Wholesale gasoline fell 1 percent to $1.81 a gallon. Heating oil lost 1.1 percent to $2.26 a gallon and natural gas declined 0.3 percent to $3.19 per 1,000 cubic feet.

METALS: Gold lost 0.2 percent to $1,225.30 an ounce. Silver rose 0.1 percent to $14.46 an ounce. Copper slumped 2.8 percent to $2.66 a pound.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 112.96 yen from 112.35 yen. The euro fell to $1.1342 from $1.1390.

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AP Markets Writer Marley Jay can be reached at http://twitter.com/MarleyJayAP

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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