Thursday, 19 July, 2018

Markets Right Now: Health care, banks lead US stocks lower

Trader Michael Milano works on the floor of the Trader Michael Milano works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Monday
Nellie Chapman | 20 April, 2017, 06:35

KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor's 500 index shed 4 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,344 as of 10:10 a.m.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell 113.64 points, or 0.55 per cent, to 20,523.28, the S&P 500 lost 6.83 points, or 0.29 per cent, to 2,342.18 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 7.32 points, or 0.12 per cent, to 5,849.47. Goldman Sachs accounted for most of that loss. Hong Kong's Hang Seng shed 1.4 percent to 23,924.54 and the Shanghai Composite Index shed 0.9 percent to 3,196.71. Johnson & Johnson took its biggest one-day loss in a year.

In last few weeks, stocks have been lower and bond yields have dipped to five-month lows. The company's revenue was weaker than expected as sales of its Crohn's disease drug Remicade declined 6 percent.

Health care stocks and banks are leading US indexes broadly lower in midday trading on Wall Street.

The S&P 500 is up 103.36 points, or 4.6 percent.

One bright spot was Dow component UnitedHealth UNH.N whose shares rose 1.3 percent to $169.25 after the health insurer reported better-than-expected quarterly results and raised its profit and revenue forecasts for the year. Cardinal Health sank $9.40, or 11.5 percent, to $72.43.

Goldman Sachs lost 4.7 percent to $215.58 after hitting its lowest level since November 29 following earnings that missed expectations as trading revenue dropped. The stock gave up $11.82, or 5.2 percent, to $214.44.

Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by a 1.11-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.27-to-1 ratio favoured decliners.

Meanwhile, London's FTSE 100 slumped 2.5% after U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May said she'll seek an early election June 8 to strengthen her hand headed into Brexit talks.

Although Bank of America reported a better-than-expected profit, its shares reversed course to trade slightly lower, falling in line with the broader market. It rose to $1.2743 from $1.2563. Visit for more information on this news. Polls don't give a clear edge to any of the four leading candidates ahead of Sunday's vote. In Germany the DAX shed 0.9%. It also revised the terms of the sale of its credit card business. Goldman Sachs Group Inc lost 3% and was the biggest drag on the Dow.

BONDS: Bond prices jumped.

According to the S&P Global Markets Intelligence, the investors are expecting the earnings for S&P 500 companies in the first-quarter to rise by almost 10 percent against their performance a year ago. Household goods makers like Whole Foods Market and Molson Coors, along with utilities, real estate investment trusts and phone companies made some gains. Bond prices and the pound rose and European stock indexes tumbled.