US stocks close mixed amid earnings, data

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New York, July 24 (IANS) US stocks closed mixed as investors awaited second-quarter earnings reports from some of the largest technology companies as well as major economic data.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average on Monday was down 13.83 points, or 0.06 per cent, to 25,044.29. The S&P 500 was up 5.15 points, or 0.18 per cent, to 2,806.98. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 21.67 points, or 0.28 per cent, to 7,841.87, Xinhua reported.

Google parent company Alphabet posted earnings per share and revenue that both topped Wall Street’s estimates after the closing bell on Monday. Facebook and Amazon will report their earnings later this week.

Technology stocks are the best performers this year, rising more than 15 per cent so far.

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This earnings season has been great so far. Second quarter earnings are expected to increase 22 per cent from the same period last year. Excluding the energy sector, the earnings growth estimate declines to 18.2 per cent.

Of the 500 companies in the S&P 500 that have reported earnings by July 20, 83.9 per cent have reported earnings above analyst expectations. This is above the long-term average of 64 per cent and above the prior four quarter average of 75 per cent.

The second-quarter blended revenue growth estimate is 8.3 per cent. Excluding the energy sector, the revenue growth estimate declines to 7.2 per cent. 73.6 per cent of companies have reported revenue above analyst expectations.

This is above the long-term average of 60 per cent and above the prior four quarter average of 72 per cent.

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On the economic front, US existing home sales fell for a third straight month in June as ongoing supply and demand imbalance pushed median sales price to a new all-time high.

The National Association of Realtors said on Monday that total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, decreased 0.6 per cent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.38 million in June from a downwardly revised 5.41 million in May.

With last month’s decline, sales are now 2.2 per cent below a year ago.

–IANS

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