Stocks slightly higher, but Turkey still a primary focus


U.S. stocks traded slightly higher Monday, with the technology sector leading the rebound, though ongoing turmoil in Turkey limited investors’ appetite for riskier assets.

While the U.S. doesn’t have much direct economic exposure to the country, instability in the region sparked concerns that its problems could spill into other parts of the world, building on the uncertainty surrounding trade policy between the U.S. and its major trading partners.

What are benchmarks doing?

The Dow Jones Industrial Average

DJIA, +0.22%

rose 14 points to 24,329, a gain of less than 0.1%. The S&P 500

SPX, +0.26%

 was up 3 points, or 0.1%, to 2,836. The Nasdaq Composite Index

COMP, +0.41%

rose 18 points, or 0.2%, to 7,856.

Both the Dow and the S&P are coming off three-day declines; Friday represented the biggest one-day drop for the Dow since July 11, while the S&P had its worst session since June 27 on Friday.

The tone was generally positive on Monday, with seven of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors in positive territory, though most of them rose 0.2% or less. The best-performing sector was tech, which rose 0.4%. Among notable movers, both Apple Inc.

AAPL, +0.93%

 and Facebook Inc.

FB, +1.04%

 rose 0.6%.

What’s driving markets?

U.S. investors kept their attention trained on developments in Turkey. The Turkish central bank pledged to provide “all the liquidity the banks need” in a statement Monday. It also said banks would be able to borrow foreign-exchange deposits from the central bank at one-month and one-week maturities. Analysts said Turkey’s reluctance to raise interest rates stood out.

However, those events failed to curb concern about the possible contagion from Turkey’s currency crisis, with market participants fretting that the tumble in the lira

USDTRY, +6.8596%

 could ripple though financial markets, hurting emerging-market economies, as well as those in Europe, subjected to bank exposure in particular.

On Monday, the Turkish lira extended its slide, with one dollar buying 6.8475 lira, compared against 6.4275 lira late Friday, a decline of 6.4% for the lira after it plunged about 14% on Friday. At the lira’s lows, a dollar bought 7.1310 lira.

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What are market participants saying?

“We’re going through a rolling crisis phase. Markets have become so stretched in terms of nerve that any headline risk becomes a source of investor angst. I don’t see Turkey as a significant risk, but investors are very worried about what the next headline risk is going to be,” said Tom Stringfellow, who oversees about $14 billion as chief investment officer for Frost Investment Advisors.

What stocks are in focus?

Sysco Corp.

SYY, +7.14%

 rose 7.5% after it reported fourth-quarter results that topped expectations.

Hologic Inc.

HOLX, -3.15%

 fell 3.3% after it said its Cynosure division would suspend marketing and distribution of its Vitalia TempSure device for the heating of vaginal tissue.

Dycom Industries Inc.

DY, -20.61%

 plummeted 21% after it cut its second-quarter profit and sales outlook.

What are other markets doing?


GCZ8, -0.92%

 fell 0.9%, dropping to a 17-month low, as global investors flocked into dollars to take cover from the eroding financial crisis in Turkey.

The U.S. dollar index

DXY, +1.08%

 was little changed following three straight days of gains. It is trading near its highest levels since July 2017.

Crude-oil prices

CLK9, -0.37%

 fell 0.4%.

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Source : MTV