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Wall Street treads water amid trade, corporate worries

Mar 14 2019 16:26

Wall Street was little moved at the open on Thursday as investors brushed aside a bevy of worrisome corporate and trade news.

Shares in the embattled US engineering giant General Electric, aircraft maker Boeing and pharmaceuticals firm Johnson & Johnson, were all lower.

Meanwhile, Bloomberg reported a "signing summit" between the presidents of the United States and China, originally expected as early as late March, had been pushed back a month as negotiators struggled to resolve their eight-month trade war.

About 10 minutes into the day's trade war, the benchmark Dow Jones Industrial Average was essentially flat at 25 716.54.

The broader S&P 500 and tech-heavy Nasdaq were down 0.1% to 2 808.21 and 7 634.35, respectively.

Amid the slew of negative reports, analyst Patrick O'Hare of Briefing.com said investors' apparent lack of concern was "remarkable."

"This market, which we said yesterday was acting as if it didn't have a care in the world, still seems to be clinging to its insouciant manner," he wrote.

Boeing managed to climb 0.3% a day after the United States became the last major economy to ground the company's top-selling 737 MAX aircraft following two fatal crashes since October.

It's stock is still down about 10% since before Sunday's fatal crash in Ethiopia.

GE was up 4.3% despite announcing early Thursday it expected negative cash flow of as much as $2bn from its core industrial segment this year, setting up another year of lower profits.

Drug maker Johnson & Johnson fell 0.6% a day after a California jury became the latest to award millions in damages to plaintiff who said the company's baby powder had given her terminal cancer.

Facebook was down 2.7% following New York Times reporting that its data deals with major technology companies.

equities  |  wall street  |  markets
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