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Wall Street recovers from a bout of virus

2020-01-29 HKT 06:18
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  • Traders took to bargain-hunting following Monday's slide. Photo: AP
    Traders took to bargain-hunting following Monday's slide. Photo: AP
US markets have bounced back on solid economic data and mixed earnings, after falling significantly on Monday because of China's virus outbreak.

The Dow Jones was up 187 points or 0.7 percent at 28,722. The S&P 500 gained 1.0 percent to 3,276, while the Nasdaq rose 1.4 percent to 9,269.

Authorities remained fixated on the Sars-like virus, which has already killed over 100 people in China and spread to about 15 countries, but investors pivoted from Monday's rout, apparently concluding the pullback was a buying opportunity.

There "some optimism that's crept into the market that maybe this coronavirus won't spread enough out of control to really create a major epidemic crisis," said LBBW's Karl Haeling.

US consumer confidence jumped more than expected in January, according to the Conference Board.

Meanwhile, orders of durable goods in December topped expectations, though some analysts pointed to weakness in the underlying data suggesting vulnerabilities in business investing.

Pfizer slumped 5.1 percent as it reported a US$337 million loss in the fourth quarter on lower sales.

Fellow Dow member 3M sank 5.7 percent as it announced it was cutting 1,500 jobs and took a charge of $134 million in restructuring expenses. Net income in the fourth quarter fell 28.1 percent to $969 million.

Among others reporting results, United Technologies gained 1.2 percent, Lockheed Martin won 1.1 percent and Harley-Davidson dropped 2.6 percent.

Apple jumped 2.8 percent ahead of its earnings report after the market closed Tuesday. A report from Nikkei said Apple had ordered higher iPhone production from suppliers, but said the push could be complicated by the coronavirus. (AFP)