Stocks continue advance, Dow rises over 27,000 for first time
Stocks are adding to gains today as Fed Chair Jerome Powell is back on Capitol Hill for a second day of testimony, this time in front of the Senate Banking Committee. The S&P crossed above 3,000 for the first time yesterday ahead of Powell meeting with the House's Committee on Financial Services and the Dow eclipsed its own round number milestone this morning as it crossed above 27,000. A tweet from President Trump chastising China for not upholding its commitment to buy the agricultural products from U.S farmers "that they said they would" looked briefly like it might stop the market's momentum, but stocks have resumed their advance.
ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., the June Consumer Prices Index beat assumptions with gains of 0.1% headline and 0.3% for the core reading. Initial jobless claims dropped 13,000 to 209,000 in the first week of July, which included the Independence Day holiday.
TOP NEWS: Shares of pharmaceutical distributors and owners of pharmacy benefit managers are on the rise on Thursday following reports saying that the Trump administration has withdrawn its proposal to eliminate rebates from government drug plans. Commenting on the news, Raymond James analyst Chris Meekins called the decision "a win" for PBMs and distributors and "a slight negative" for the pharmaceutical makers. In midday trading, shares of CVS Health (CVS) have jumped almost 5%, Cigna (CI) has gained over 10%, UnitedHealth (UNH) has advanced about 5% and Anthem (ANTM) is up 4%.
Delta (DAL) is up 1.5% after the airline operator reported better than expected second quarter revenue and profits and raised its earnings outlook for the fiscal year.
Fastenal (FAST) is moving in the opposite direction after earnings, sliding 4% after the industrial parts supplier said that "general economic activity remained positive," but it "did see slowing in the second quarter of 2019 relative to activity levels experienced in the first quarter of 2019."
MAJOR MOVERS: Among the noteworthy gainers was Nutanix (NTNX), which rose 6.5% after William Blair analyst Jason Ader said that channel checks show early signs of an upswing for its business.
Also higher was AAR Corp. (AIR), which gained 9% after reporting quarterly results.
Among the notable losers was Aimmune Therapeutics (AIMT), which slid 8% after it cautioned shareholders on the ICER report on emerging treatments for peanut allergy.
Also lower was Bed Bath & Beyond (BBBY), which fell 7% after reporting quarterly results.
INDEXES: Near midday,
the Dow was up 196.46, or 0.73%, to 27,056.66, the Nasdaq was up 17.30, or 0.21%, to 8,219.83, and the S&P 500 was up 6.85, or 0.23%, to 2,999.92.