FILE - This Dec. 21, 2016, file photo shows the New York Stock Exchange. Stocks are opening lower on Wall Street, Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018, as a New Year's rally runs out of gas. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

Stocks start higher behind health care companies and banks

November 07, 2017 - 10:12 am

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks edged higher Tuesday morning as health care companies and banks made modest gains. Oil prices also held steady after they jumped to two-year highs a day ago. Investors are focused on company earnings, with travel booking sites Priceline and TripAdvisor taking steep losses.

KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 4 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,595 as of 9:55 a.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 48 points, or 0.2 percent, to 23,596. The Nasdaq composite added 2 points to 6,789. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks fell less than 1 point to 1,497.

The S&P 500, Dow and Nasdaq have closed at record highs the last two days.

TRAVELING MOOD: Travel website TripAdvisor plunged after its third-quarter revenue fell short of analyst estimates. Booking service Priceline Group had a better-than-expected quarter, but its forecasts for the current quarter disappointed Wall Street. Analysts said the company is spending a lot of money on advertising, but that may pay off with increased market share. TripAdvisor sank $6.37, or 16.1 percent, to $33.16 and Priceline lost $192.47, or 10.1 percent, to $1,710.53. Competitor Expedia shed $2.58, or 2.1 percent, to $120.40.

Royal Caribbean Cruises jumped $6.66, or 5.3 percent, to $132 after it had a strong quarter even though its business was affected by three major hurricanes.

EARLY LEADERS: AbbVie climbed $2.42, or 2.6 percent, to $95.38 and Incyte rose $3.23, or 3.1 percent, to $108.68 as drugmakers helped the health care sector advance. Financial service company Prudential added $1.23, or 1.1 percent, to $113.62 and insurer Progressive picked up 68 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $50.89. Industrial firms also rose. Logistics services provider Expeditors International of Washington jumped $4.67, or 8.1 percent, to $62.17 after it did better than investors expected in the third quarter. Aerospace company Boeing picked up $2.62, or 1 percent, to $266.69.

SLIMMED DOWN: Weight loss company Weight Watchers continued to surge after it raised its forecasts for the year. Its stock rose $7.82, or 17.5 percent, to $52.62. It started the year at $11.45.

OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude fell 28 cents to $57.07 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, fell 40 cents to $63.87 a barrel in London. Oil prices rose about 3 percent Monday and hit two-year highs after a wave of arrests of princes and other officials in Saudi Arabia. Investors wondered if the upheaval could affect oil supplies and prices. The government said the arrests were part of as a crackdown on corruption, but skeptics say it targets potential rivals and critics of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who heads the anti-corruption committee that was formed shortly before the arrests.

BONDS: Bond prices were little changed. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note remained at 2.32 percent. The yield on the 2-year note held steady at 1.62 percent.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 114.19 yen from 113.77 yen. The euro fell to $1.1579 from $1.1606.

OVERSEAS: The CAC 40 in France lost 0.1 percent while Germany's DAX rose 0.1 percent. London's FTSE 100 shed 0.2 percent. Tokyo's Nikkei 225 jumped 1.7 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng advanced 1.3 percent. In Seoul, the Kospi lost 0.2 percent.


AP Markets Writer Marley Jay can be reached at His work can be found at

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