UNITED STATES NEWS

Stock market today: US markets inch higher before opening bell with a winning week in sight

Sep 14, 2023, 11:37 PM

U.S. markets were slow to gain traction before the opening bell Friday with global shares mostly higher on news that China’s slowing economy showed signs of stabilizing.

Futures for the S&P 500 inched up 0.1% while the Dow Jones industrials rose 0.2%.

U.S. markets look to finish with gains after a busy week of economic data hinted at a mostly healthy economy with the Federal Reserve holding its next policy meeting next week.

About 13,000 U.S. auto workers stopped making vehicles and went on strike Friday after union leaders and negotiators for Detroit’s three automakers couldn’t reach a deal before the four-year contracts expired at 11:59 p.m. Thursday.

Members of the United Auto Workers union began picketing at three different Midwest plants, one each for General Motors, Ford and Stellantis.

If the strike lasts a long time, dealers could run short of vehicles and prices could rise, impacting a U.S. economy already under strain from elevated inflation.

Boosting market sentiments this week was a report that said U.S. shoppers spent more at retailers last month than economists expected. That reflects a remarkably resilient job market, which has withstood a steep jump in interest rates.

A separate report Thursday morning said fewer workers applied for unemployment benefits last week than expected, which implies the number of layoffs remains low.

A third report said prices getting paid at the wholesale level rose more last month than economists expected. That could be a discouraging signal for households if the higher-than-expected inflation gets passed on to shoppers at the consumer level.

To try to get inflation back down to its 2% target, the Federal Reserve has been increasing interest rates sharply since early last year. Most economists think that the Fed will pause on a rate hike at next week’s meeting, but that it likely hasn’t ruled out one more rate increase before the end of 2023.

In Asian trading, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng surged 0.8% to 18,182.89, while the Shanghai Composite index was shed 0.3% to 3,117.74.

Late Thursday, the People’s Bank of China said it would cut the reserve requirement for banks by 0.25 percentage points as of Friday, “In order to consolidate the foundation for economic recovery and maintain reasonable and sufficient liquidity.”

Further boosting sentiment, the government reported Friday that China’s industrial output rose 4.5% in August from a year earlier, up from 3.7% in July. That is seen as a sign the economy may be breaking out of its post-pandemic malaise.

Japan’s benchmark Nikkei 225 surged 1.1% to finish at 33,533.09. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 jumped 1.3% to 7,279.00. South Korea’s Kospi added 1.1% to 2,601.28.

Arm Holdings jumped 24.7% in their debut on Nasdaq. The strong welcome could be an encouraging signal for the IPO market, which has slowed since the stock market began tumbling early last year on fears about higher interest rates.

“The Arm IPO optimism and China’s further stimulus measures boosted sentiment across Asian stock markets,” Tina Teng, a markets analyst at CMC Markets APAC & Canada, said in a commentary.

France’s CAC 40 gained 1.6% at midday, Germany’s DAX rose 1% and Britain’s FTSE 100 gained 0.5%.

In energy trading, benchmark U.S. crude rose 25 cents to $90.41 a barrel. Crude has been climbing for months as oil-producing countries try to support its price by curtailing their supplies. Brent crude, the international standard, gained 20 cents to $93.90 a barrel.

In currency trading, the U.S. dollar rose to 147.85 Japanese yen from 147.42 yen. The euro cost $1.0655, up from $1.0645.

On Wall Street, the S&P 500 climbed 0.8% on Thursday for its best day in two weeks while the Dow Jones Industrial Average rallied 1%. The Nasdaq composite added 0.8%.

—-

Kageyama reported from Tokyo; Ott reported from Silver Spring, Md.

United States News

Associated Press

Southern New Mexico wildfire leads to evacuation of village of 7,000

RUIDOSO, N.M. (AP) — Residents of a village in southern New Mexico were ordered to flee their homes Monday without taking time to grab any belongings due to a fast-moving wildfire. “GO NOW: Do not attempt to gather belongings or protect your home. Evacuate immediately,” officials with Ruidoso, a village home to 7,000 people, said […]

4 hours ago

A sign outside the Internal Revenue Service building is seen, May 4, 2021, in Washington. The gover...

Associated Press

The IRS plans to end another major tax loophole for the wealthy, could raise $50 billion in revenue

The Internal Revenue Service plans to end another major tax loophole that could raise more than $50 billion in revenue over the next decade.

7 hours ago

President Joe Biden meets with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg in the Oval Office at the Wh...

Associated Press

President Biden to announce deportation protection and work permits for those married to US citizens

President Biden is planning to announce a sweeping new policy that would lift the threat of deportation for those married to U.S. citizens.

8 hours ago

Associated Press

Former GOP Rep. George Nethercutt, who defeated House Speaker Tom Foley in 1994, dies at 79

SEATTLE (AP) — Former U.S. Rep. George Nethercutt, who was a Spokane lawyer with little political experience when he ousted Democratic Speaker of the House Tom Foley as part of a stunning GOP wave that shifted national politics to the right in 1994, has died. He was 79. Nethercutt died Friday near Denver of progressive […]

8 hours ago

Associated Press

Convicted killer of California college student Kristin Smart ordered to pay $350k in restitution

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. (AP) — A California judge ruled Monday that a man convicted of killing 19-year-old college student Kristin Smart in 1996 must pay just over $350,000 to her family for costs they incurred after her death. Monterey County Superior Court Judge Jennifer O’Keefe ordered Paul Flores to make the payments after a […]

8 hours ago

Associated Press

Central African Republic faces increased rebel activity and spillover from Sudan war, UN experts say

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — Activities of armed groups in the volatile Central African Republic have increased, complicating a security landscape that has seen a spillover of the conflict in neighboring Sudan, U.N. experts warn in a new report. The panel of experts cite confirmed reports of air raids by the Sudanese military around border areas […]

8 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

DESERT INSTITUTE FOR SPINE CARE

Desert Institute for Spine Care is the place for weekend warriors to fix their back pain

Spring has sprung and nothing is better than March in Arizona. The temperatures are perfect and with the beautiful weather, Arizona has become a hotbed for hikers, runners, golfers, pickleball players and all types of weekend warriors.

...

Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.

...

DISC Desert Institute for Spine Care

Sciatica pain is treatable but surgery may be required

Sciatica pain is one of the most common ailments a person can face, and if not taken seriously, it could become one of the most harmful.

Stock market today: US markets inch higher before opening bell with a winning week in sight