Banks, tech companies lead U.S. markets

NEW YORK – Banks and technology companies took U.S. stocks higher Tuesday, and less-loved sectors including phone and real estate companies also climbed as companies continued to report strong second-quarter results.

Payment processors also made hefty gains, while Sprint said it gained wireless subscribers.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 6.05 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,476.35. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 72.80 points, or 0.3 percent, to 21,963.92. The blue chip index closed at a record high for the fifth day in a row. The Nasdaq composite added 14.82 points, or 0.2 percent, to 6,362.94. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks gained 3.19 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,428.33.

Banks helped lead the way. The top gainers included JPMorgan Chase & Co., which rose $1.23, or 1.3 percent, to $93.03 and Citigroup Inc., which added $1.15, or 1.7 percent, to $69.60.

Intel Corp. rose as South Korean regulators signed off on its deal for Mobileye. Mobileye makes software that processes information from cameras and other car sensors to decide where an autonomous car should steer, and Intel agreed to buy it for $15 billion in March. Intel gained 88 cents, or 2.5 percent, to $36.35.

Tech could be in for more gains Wednesday. Apple Inc. reported a strong quarter after the closing bell on Tuesday, and its stock rose 4.7 percent in after-hours trading. Apple reported earnings and revenue that far exceeded analysts’ forecasts, and issued a solid outlook for the fourth quarter, when the company is expected to launch a 10th anniversary version of the iPhone.

Sprint Corp. had its best day this year after it said it’s open to combining with another phone company or a cable company. The fourth-largest U.S. wireless carrier also reported its first quarterly profit in three years as it cut costs and added wireless subscribers. Sprint rose 89 cents, or 11.2 percent, to $8.87.

T-Mobile US Inc. climbed $1.41, or 2.3 percent, to $63.07, and Verizon Communications Inc. gained 49 cents, or 1 percent, to $48.89. Phone companies, real estate firms, and utility all benefited because bond yields fell, which made the companies more attractive to investors who want income.

Under Armour Inc. sank $1.72, or 8.6 percent, to $18.30, down 52 percent since late October.

Oil prices plunged after a six-day rally. U.S. crude shed $1.01, or 2 percent, to $49.16 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, dropped 94 cents, or 1.8 percent, to $51.78 a barrel in London.

Gold added $6, to $1,279.40 an ounce. Silver lost 2 cents, to $16.76 an ounce. Copper dipped 1 cent, to $2.88 a pound.

The dollar rose to 110.30 yen from 110.24 yen. The euro slid to $1.1801 from $1.1831.


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