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U.S. stock benchmarks climbed tepidly higher late-morning on Monday, as a pair of its more embattled sectors, technology and energy, drew early bidders.
In the near term, investors also braced for Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen, who will deliver her semiannual monetary-policy report to Congress on Wednesday and Thursday. The start of second-quarter earnings season, launching in earnest on Friday with a roster of banks, also is in focus.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.08% added 11 points, or about less than 0.1%, at 21,424. The S&P 500 index SPX, +0.18% traded up 4 points, or 0.2%, at 2,428, as a 0.7% rise in the tech sector, helped to lift the broad-market benchmark.
“All of the conversations right now are about earnings. The health-care bill and the tax bill all of that has been put in the back burner as the market moves on to the next catalyst, and what matters right now is earnings,” said Mike Antonelli, equity sales trader at Robert W Baird & Co., referring to initiatives by Republicans to push through bills to cut corporate taxes and overhaul Obamacare.
Meanwhile, Abercrombie & Fitch Co. ANF, -21.67% shares lost a fifth of their value after the embattled retailer early Monday said it terminated a potential buyout of the company, and Best Buy Co. Inc.’s stock BBY, -6.67% tumbled 7.3% amid worries about heightened competition, highlighting the struggles of brick-and-mortar retailers.
Last week, the Dow, S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite ended modestly higher. The three gauges have all tacked on 8% or more so far this year, but they’re trading below their record peaks hit in June.
Investors are paying attention to whether oil prices can pull out of a slump—and whether the technology sector XLK, +0.52% can follow through on Friday’s rally.
“Central banks are likely to remain a key focus for investors this week, with the sudden hawkish shift among a number of them in recent weeks pushing bond yields higher and weighing on risk appetite,” said Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at Oanda, in a note.
Economic news: A reading on consumer credit is slated to hit at 3 p.m. Eastern Time.
Amazon.com Inc. AMZN, +1.84% may be in focus as it is set to launch on Tuesday its “prime day” sales event. Shares of the company were up about 1.5%. The company also reported that a new fulfillment center in Orlando, Fla., would create 1,500 new jobs, with benefits.
Check out: MarketWatch’s Economic Calendar