U.S. STOCKS END LITTLE CHANGED AS UTILITY, ENERGY SHARES DECLINE

U.S. stocks fluctuated Wednesday before ending flat after the Federal Reserve’s decision to maintain interest rates and a report showed companies last month added the most workers to payrolls since June.

The S&P 500 Index added less than 0.1 percent to 2,279.55 at 12:50 p.m. in New York, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 27 points to 19,890.94 and the Nasdaq Composite Index jumped 0.5 percent.

Utility shares and energy stocks weighed on the market after the S&P 500 on Tuesday capped its longest streak without gains since the week before the U.S. presidential election, trimming a third monthly advance.

  • Utility stocks down 1.7% after the Dow utilities closed above its 200-day average on Tuesday; S&P utilities posted worst day since Nov. 30 with 27 of 28 members in index lower;
    • 10-year Treasury yield up 2.1 basis points to 2.474%
    • Dominion Resources worst performer after warning of “challenging year” pushed shares down 5.8%; American Water Works, Aqua America, Shenandoah Telecommunications, Telephone and Data Systems and Iridium Communications Inc. all decline
  • REITs down 1.2% for fifth loss in six sessions
  • Tech and health-care shares lead market, up at least 0.6%
  • Energy shares decline 0.8% even as oil adds 1.3%
  • VIX down from a two-week high, falling 2% after jumping 12% on Monday
  • Volume: about 7.6 billion shares traded hands, above the year-to-date average of 6.7 billion
  • Apple up 6.1% after reporting better-than-forecast quarterly earnings, while Facebook Inc. added 2.2% ahead of its results due Wednesday before adding to gains in after-market trading
  • Federal Reserve officials left interest rates unchanged while acknowledging rising confidence among consumers and businesses following Donald Trump’s election victory
  • More than a third of S&P 500 members have released quarterly results so far this season, of which about three-quarters beat profit estimates and half topped sales forecasts, according to data compiled by Bloomberg
  • EARNINGS:
    • After-market Wednesday: Lincoln National (LNC), MetLife (MET), AvalonBay Communities (AVB), Qorvo (QRVO), Ameriprise Financial (AMP), Hologic (HOLX), Mid-America Apartment Communities (MAA), Lannett Co (LCI), Tractor Supply (TSCO), Symantec (SYMC), Facebook (FB), Torchmark (TMK), Allstate (ALL), Edwards Lifesciences (EW), Unum Group (UNM)
    • Pre-market Thursday: Xcel Energy (XEL), Ball (BLL), Ryder System (R),Gartner (IT), Eaton (ETN)Snap-on (SNA), Becton Dickinson (BDX), ConocoPhillips (COP), Cigna (CI), Boston Scientific (BSX), Harris (HRS), Merck (MRK), Estee Lauder (EL), Xylem (XYL), Marsh & McLennan (MMC), IDEXX Laboratories (IDXX), Sirius XM (SIRI), CME Group (CME), Philip Morris International (PM), CMS Energy (CMS), Parker-Hannifin (PH), Ralph Lauren (RL)
      -www.bloomberg.com
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