Media, bank gains fortify stocks
NEW YORK — U.S. stocks finished mostly higher Monday as banks, media and energy companies climbed just enough to cancel out losses for technology companies, including Facebook and Amazon.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 1.80 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,470.30. The Dow Jones industrial average continued to build on its record highs. It gained 60.81 points, or 0.3 percent, to 21,891.12. The Nasdaq composite lost 26.55 points, or 0.4 percent, to 6,348.12. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks dipped 4.12 points, or 0.3 percent, to 1,425.14. A majority of the stocks on the New York Stock Exchange rose.
Cable provider Charter Communications surged on a report that it might be bought by a Japanese technology company.
Technology companies missed out. Facebook returned some of its gains from last week, when it posted strong second-quarter results, and reports of higher expenses continued to affect Amazon’s shares. Banks rose, with HSBC Holdings climbing after it disclosed its own earnings.
About half of the companies in the Standard & Poor’s 500 have reported their second-quarter results, and this week, Apple and other companies will join the fray. Steve Wood, chief market strategist for Russell Investments, said he expects strong earnings for U.S. companies, but he thinks stock markets in other regions will do better.
“The earnings cycle and the economic cycle are earlier stage and the central bank of Europe is going to be providing liquidity over the next year,” he said. “It’s been an eight-and-a-half-year bull market in the U.S. and eightplus-year economic expansion.”
Charter Communications climbed after Bloomberg reported that Japanese conglomerate SoftBank is considering buying it. The report Sunday said SoftBank initially wanted to combine Charter with Sprint, but after Charter rejected that idea, the technology company may buy Charter outright. Shares of the cable provider jumped $21.65, or 5.8 percent, to $391.91, and investors value Charter at about $101 billion.
HSBC said higher interest rates helped it make more money from its lending business, and it plans to buy back another $2 billion in stock. Its shares climbed $1.19, or 2.4 percent, to $50.09, and Capital One Financial picked up $1.21, or 1.4 percent, to $86.18.
Among technology companies, Facebook fell $3.20, or 1.9 percent, to $169.25. The social media network leaped 8.6 percent last week. Alphabet, Google’s parent company, shed $12.83, or 1.3 percent, to $945.50 and chipmaker Micron Technology fell $1.18, or 4 percent, to $28.10.
E-commerce giant Amazon also slumped $32.26, or 3.2 percent, to $98.78.
The price of oil rose again after its best week of the year. Benchmark U.S. crude added 46 cents to $50.17 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, picked up 13 cents to $52.65 a barrel in London. U.S. crude rose almost 9 percent last week to reach its highest price since late May.
Bond prices were little changed. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note stayed at 2.29 percent.
Gold fell $1.90 to $1,273.40 an ounce. Silver rose 9 cents to $16.79 an ounce. Copper added 2 cents to $2.89 a pound.