U.S. SHARES RETREAT AS INVESTORS AWAIT FED MEETING

NEW YORK – Apple shares gave back some of last week’s gains on Monday, pushing the Nasdaq into negative territory as the broader market treaded water ahead of a Federal Reserve meeting.

Apple fell 1.3 per cent, retreating for the second session in a row after surging more than 12 per cent just ahead of the launch of the latest iPhones.

Analysts pointed to investor caution ahead of Wednesday’s Federal Reserve policy announcement.

“It’s just a Fed market at this time and we should not expect too much movement either way until the Fed is out of the way,” said Peter Cardillo, chief economist at First Standard Financial Company.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 3.63 points (0.02 per cent) at 18,120.17. The broad-based S&P 500 was essentially flat at 2,139.12, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index shed 9.54 points (0.18 per cent) at 5,235.03.

Wells Fargo rose 1.3 per cent following an upgrade from Robert W. Baird. That was a boost after shares tumbled last week in response to charges by regulators that the bank fraudulently opened some two million deposit and credit accounts in customers’ names without their knowledge.

Chief executive John Stumpf is scheduled to testify before a Senate panel on Tuesday.

Other financial stocks were also in positive territory, including Bank of America, Citigroup and JPMorgan Chase.

Twitter dropped 3.9 per cent as it eased its 140-character limit on tweets. The move comes as Twitter’s efforts to increase its user base and engagement have been sputtering, raising questions about its growth potential.

Sarepta Therapeutics surged 73.9 per cent after announcing it won accelerated approval for Exondys 51, a treatment for Duchenne muscular dystrophy.

General Motors jumped 2.4 per cent following an upgrade by Morgan Stanley after concluding that the market was underestimating its earnings outlook and the strength of the auto market over the next two years.
– AFP

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