Wall Street ends at record high, led by banks; Ap­ple weighs

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The ma­jor Wall Street in­dexes hit record clos­ing highs on Tues­day, with fi­nan­cial stocks lead­ing the charge, but gains were stunted by a de­cline in Ap­ple, Inc. shares af­ter it un­veiled its lat­est line of iPhones. The S&P 500, Dow Jones in­dus­tri­als and Nas­daq Com­pos­ite clocked record closes, with in­vestors drawn to riskier as­sets as con­cerns about US ten­sions with North Korea eased and the fi­nan­cial im­pact from Hur­ri­cane Irma ap­peared less se­vere than was feared last week.

THE ma­jor Wall Street indices hit record clos­ing highs on Tues­day, with fi­nan­cial stocks lead­ing the charge, but gains were stunted by a de­cline in Ap­ple, Inc. shares af­ter it un­veiled its lat­est line of iPhones.

The S&P 500, Dow Jones in­dus­tri­als and Nas­daq Com­pos­ite clocked record closes, with in­vestors drawn to riskier as­sets as con­cerns about US ten­sions with North Korea eased and the fi­nan­cial im­pact from hur­ri­cane Irma ap­peared less se­vere than was feared last week.

The fi­nan­cial sec­tor was the S&P 500’s big­gest driver dur­ing the reg­u­lar ses­sion as bank stocks were helped by ris­ing US Trea­sury yields, while the util­i­ties and real es­tate sec­tors lost ground.

“It’s a bet­ter en­vi­ron­ment for risk as­sets. As long as th­ese two is­sues — North Korea and the hur­ri­cane — have re­ceded as con­cerns, it gives in­vestors a green light to fo­cus on stronger fun­da­men­tals,” said David Joy, chief mar­ket strate­gist at Ameriprise Fi­nan­cial in Bos­ton.

The Dow Jones In­dus­trial Av­er­age rose 61.49 points or 0.28% to 22,118.86, the S&P 500 gained 8.37 points or 0.34% to 2,496.48 and the Nas­daq Com­pos­ite added 22.02 points, or 0.34%, to 6,454.28.

Con­cerns about hur­ri­cane Irma’s im­pact re­ceded as it weak­ened to a trop­i­cal de­pres­sion, while in­vestors shrugged off US Pres­i­dent Don­ald Trump’s com­ments that the lat­est United Na­tions sanc­tions on North Korea were only a very small step and noth­ing com­pared with what would have to hap­pen to deal with the coun­try’s nu­clear pro­gram.

“A lot of it is the re­al­iza­tion that the lat­est hur­ri­cane wasn’t as dev­as­tat­ing in the US as peo­ple feared,” said Tim Ghriskey, chief in­vest­ment of­fi­cer of So­laris As­set Man­age­ment in New York.

Ap­ple’s shares closed a volatile trad­ing ses­sion 0.40% lower at $160.86 af­ter ris­ing as high as $163.96 fol­low­ing the un­veil­ing of its 10th an­niver­sary edi­tion of the iPhone. Ap­ple’s re­lease date of Nov. 3 was later than some in­vestors had ex­pected.

While some in­vestors cited wor­ries about whether Ap­ple faces sup­ply short­ages, oth­ers said traders were just tak­ing prof­its. “There were no block­buster sur­prises although what they’re do­ing with the prod­ucts is all pretty good,” said Mr. Ghriskey. The iPhone maker was the sec­ond­biggest drag on the S&P be­hind McDon­ald’s, which fell 3.20% to a more than one-month low on wor­ries about third-quar­ter re­sults.

Fi­nan­cials, S&P’s big­gest up­ward driver, rose 1.20% on banks’ 1.80% jump. In­vestors in banks, whose prof­its are boosted in part by higher rates, were re­act­ing to a jump in US Trea­sury 10-year yields to a three-week high af­ter a 10-year note auc­tion. —

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