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US: Stocks rise after Trump healthcare bill fiasco

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[NEW YORK] Wall Street stocks were steady in early trading Tuesday with shares of Tesla boosted by news that China's Tencent Holdings took a stake in the US electric car maker.

About 15 minutes into trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average stood at 20,542.07, down less than 0.1 per cent.

The Dow has fallen the last eight sessions and another loss at the closing bell would mean the first nine-day losing streak since 1978.

However, the broader S&P 500 index was up slightly at 2,341.66, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index added 0.1 per cent to 5,379.29.

The muted trading was a prolongation of the trend since President Donald Trump's healthcare reform law died in Congress late last week. But investors continue to hold out hope Trump will succeed in advancing tax cuts in Washington.

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Tesla Motors advanced 2.4 per cent after Tencent disclosed in a US securities filing that it bought a five per cent stake in the US company for US$1.8 billion. The Chinese technology company runs WeChat, the world's most popular messaging service, as well as many mobile game platforms.

Darden Restaurants, which owns Olive Garden and other chains, shot up 7.1 per cent after reporting that third-quarter net profit rose 56.6 per cent from the year-ago period to US$165.6 million.


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