US stock indexes edge higher in early trading; oil slips
U.S. stock indexes edged higher in light trading early Wednesday, recouping some of their modest losses from a day earlier. Health care and technology stocks were among the biggest gainers. Banks were down the most as bond yields declined. Energy stocks also fell as crude oil prices headed lower.
KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 2 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,682 as of 10:06 a.m. Eastern Time. The Dow Jones industrial average gained less than 1 point to 24,746. The Nasdaq added 11 points, or 0.2 percent, to 6,947. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks picked up 2 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,547.
A HEALTHY TURN: Several health sector stocks notched gains in early trading. Envision Healthcare picked up 55 cents, or 1.6 percent, to $34.29.
BANKS SLIDE: Banks and other financial companies fell as bond yields declined. Morgan Stanley shed 27 cents to $42.20.
ENERGY SLUMP: Declining crude oil prices weighed on oil producers and other energy companies. Helmerich & Payne fell 66 cents, or 1 percent, to $64.95.
TAKING A SWING: Callaway Golf tumbled 7 percent after the company said it invested another $20 million in entertainment company Topgolf, giving it a 14-percent stake. Callaway lost 77 cents to $14.29.
OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude dropped 39 cents to $59.58 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, which is used to price international oils, slipped 44 cents to $66.02 per barrel in London.
BOND YIELDS: Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.45 percent from 2.48 percent late Tuesday.
CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 113.33 yen from 113.18 yen on Tuesday. The euro strengthened to $1.1898 from $1.1867.
THE BITCOIN TRADE: The price of bitcoin fell 3.1 percent to $15,264 as of 10:01 a.m. ET, according to the tracking site CoinDesk. Bitcoin futures on the Cboe Futures Exchange slid 3.2 percent to $15,300. The futures contracts allow investors to make bets on the future price of bitcoin.
MARKETS OVERSEAS: Major stock indexes in Europe were mixed. Germany’s DAX slipped 0.2 percent, while France’s CAC 40 was flat. Britain’s FTSE 100 was up 0.3 percent. Earlier in Asia, Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 edged up nearly 0.1 percent, while Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 was virtually unchanged. South Korea’s Kospi added 0.4 percent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng inched 0.1 percent higher.