Stocks are mixed at midday after the major indexes had opened today’s session broadly higher. President Trump announced that the U.S. will impose sanctions against the Iranian National Bank, though the price of oil has remained stable as the risk of U.S. involvement in a military conflict is still being seen as low.
ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., the economic calendar was quiet, with only a few Fed speakers worth noting. Boston Federal Reserve Bank President Eric Rosengren explained his hawkish dissent, stating his view that "additional stimulus is not needed for an economy where labor markets ar already tight, and risks further inflating the prices of risky assets and encouraging households and firms to take on too much leverage." Meanwhile, Fed Vice Chair Richard Clarida reiterated the economy is in a good place and he's not concerned about the diversity of opinions on the FOMC, which he views as the strength of the Committee.
TOP NEWS: Ten of Apple's (AAPL) 15 requests for exclusions from 25% tariffs on Chinese imports have progressed into the third and almost final stage of review, even though U.S. President Donald Trump suggested that he would rebuff them, Bloomberg's Mark Niquette and Mark Gurman reported. Meanwhile, BofA Merrill Lynch analyst Wamsi Mohan kept his Buy rating and $250 price target on Apple, saying his tracking of the company's ship dates on various carrier sites at this point of the pre-order cycle are higher than those of last year's models. Morgan Stanley analyst Katy Huberty also said in a note to investors this morning that she sees more upside potential than downside risk to her September quarter, or fiscal Q4, iPhone shipment estimate of 43M given August data points and recent iPhone 11 pre-order data.
Shares of McDonald's (MCD) are little changed after the burger giant last night raised its quarterly dividend by 8% to $1.25 per share.
After Facebook (FB) CEO Mark Zuckerberg met with President Donald Trump on Thursday afternoon, Trump tweeted that it was a “nice meeting” and a Facebook spokesperson said that it was "constructive."
MAJOR MOVERS: Among the noteworthy gainers was McDermott (MDR), which surged 69% after announcing that it recently received unsolicited approaches to acquire all or part of Lummus Technology, with valuations exceeding $2.5B. Also higher was California Resources (CRC), which jumped 18% after Bloomberg reported the company said it is not considering restructuring, refuting a report published yesterday afternoon
Among the notable losers was Roku (ROKU), which slid 15% after Pivotal Research analyst Jeffrey Wlodarczak initiated coverage of the stock with a Sell rating and $60 price target. Also lower was Wayfair (W), which fell 4% after Berenberg analyst Graham Renwick initiated coverage of the stock with a Sell rating and $100 price target.
INDEXES: Near midday, the Dow was up 58.91, or 0.22%, to 27,153.70, the Nasdaq was down 18.04, or 0.22%, to 8,164.84, and the S&P 500 was up 4.11, or 0.14%, to 3,010.90.