U.S. equities finished higher, but very near the unchanged mark, with investors cautious ahead of an acceleration of Q2 earnings season with banks in focus. Citigroup beat the Street’s EPS and revenue estimates, but some other measures were scrutinized, while Galapagos NV rallied on Gilead Sciences’ increased stake in the Belgian biotechnology company. Treasury yields were lower and the U.S. dollar ticked higher following a read on upbeat read on regional manufacturing activity, while crude oil prices declined and gold lost ground.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) rose 27 points (0.1%) to 27,359, the S&P 500 Index was unchanged at 3,014, and the Nasdaq Composite added 14 points (0.2%) to 8,258. In light volume, 676 million shares were traded on the NYSE and 1.7 billion shares changed hands on the Nasdaq. WTI crude oil fell $0.63 to $59.58 per barrel and wholesale gasoline was down $0.05 at $1.93 per gallon. Elsewhere, the Bloomberg gold spot price decreased $1.73 to $1,414.02 per ounce, and the Dollar Index—a comparison of the U.S. dollar to six major world currencies—inched 0.1% higher to 96.94.
The Empire Manufacturing Index showed output from the New York region improved more than expected and returned to expansion territory (a reading above zero) for July. The index rose to 4.3 from June’s unrevised -8.6 level, with the Bloomberg forecast calling for a rise to 2.0.
Treasuries were slightly higher, as the yield on the 2-year note dipped 1 basis point to 1.82%, the yield on the 10-year note fell 2 bps to 2.09%, and the 30-year bond rate lost 3 bps to 2.60%.
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