You are here

US:Wall St little changed with eyes on earnings

22-41760565.1 (41786637) - 05_03_2017 - GLOBAL-MARKETS_.jpg

[WASHINGTON] US stocks were little changed on Thursday amid a flood of quarterly earnings reports, while investors assessed President Donald Trump's tax reform plan.

The one-page plan, unveiled on Wednesday, proposed deep tax cuts for many businesses, but offered no detail on how it would be paid for without increasing the deficit.

US stocks snapped a two-day rally to end lower on Wednesday after the plan was unveiled. The prospects of hefty tax cuts have been a major driver of the post-election rally since November.

"Yesterday, you saw some selling but it didn't develop into an outright heavy pressure day," said Robert Pavlik, chief market strategist at Boston Private Wealth.

Market voices on:

At 9.38 am ET (1338 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 11.43 points, or 0.05 per cent, at 20,986.52, the S&P 500 was up 0.14 points, or 0.01 per cent, at 2,387.59 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 6.55 points, or 0.11 per cent, at 6,031.78.

Six of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors were higher, lead by a 0.35 per cent gain in the technology index. PayPal jumped to an all-time high of US$47.50 after the company raised its full-year earnings forecast.

However, a more than 2 percent drop in oil prices weighed on the energy sector, which fell 0.8 percent.

Investors are keeping a close watch on the first-quarter earnings season to gauge fundamental performance in the face of lofty valuations.

Of the 181 S&P 500 companies that have released results so far, nearly 77 percent have reported earnings above analysts' expectations. In a typical quarter, about 64 per cent of the companies top earnings estimates, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.