10-4-17 10:15 AM EDT | Email Article

By Victor Reklaitis and Anora M. Gaudiano, MarketWatch

Tesla gains after Nomura's upbeat take, while Mylan gets a big lift from an FDA OK

The Dow Jones Industrial Average on Wednesday added slightly to its trek into the record books, but U.S. equity benchmarks mostly struggled to extend a multiday rally to all-time highs, as the financials, technology and energy sector slumped.

What stock benchmarks are doing

The S&P 500 was off by 2 points, or 0.1%, to 2,532, with five of its 11 main sectors trading lower. Technology and financials were leading the losses, while health-care and consumer-discretionary shares lured buyers.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 10 points, or less than 0.1%, to 22,652, on track to post a sixth consecutive gain.

The Nasdaq Composite Index , meanwhile, declined 8 points, or 0.1%, to 6,523, weighed by a slide in shares of iPhone maker Apple Inc. (AAPL).

What could drive markets?

Private-sector employment slowed in September as firms added 135,000 jobs. The report comes ahead of the government's monthly release on nonfarm payrolls that is scheduled for Friday.

Markit's September figure for its services purchasing managers' index dipped to 55.3 in September from 56 in August.

The comparable ISM report for the same month rose to 59.8, compared with 55.3 in the prior period and marking its highest level since mid-2005. A reading of 50 or greater indicates expansion.

Check out:MarketWatch's Economic Calendar (http://www.marketwatch.com/economy-politics/calendars/economic)

On the Federal Reserve front, Fed chief Janet Yellen is due to give brief opening remarks at a conference on community banking at the St. Louis Fed at 3:15 p.m. Eastern Time, and her second-in-command Stanley Fischer took part in a TV interview ahead of the open, saying the pace of interest-rate hikes was "OK."

What are strategists saying?

-- "The S&P 500 posted its sixth consecutive day of gains [on Tuesday], continuing to benefit from positive short-term momentum. The breakout from September's consolidation phase refreshed the uptrend, and should help stave off a pullback until later this month," said Katie Stockton, chief technical strategist at BTIG.

Which stocks are in focus?

Shares in electric-car maker Tesla Inc.(TSLA) rose 1.3% to around $352 after Nomura analysts initiated coverage with a buy rating and price target of $500 (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/teslatstock-gains-after-nomura-initiates-with-street-high-500-price-target-2017-10-03).

Shares in Mylan NV(MYL) surged 17% after the maker of generic drugs late Tuesday announced (http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/mylan-announces-us-fda-approval-of-first-generic-for-copaxone-40-mgml-3-times-a-week-and-may-be-eligible-for-180-day-exclusivity-300530551.html) that the Food and Drug Administration had approved its generic versions for Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.'s Copaxone, a drug for people with relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis. Teva's stock (TEVA) fell 12%.

Shares in PepsiCo Inc.(PEP) dropped 2% after the drinks heavyweight posted better-than-expected profit but weaker-than-anticipated revenue (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/pepsis-stock-gains-after-profit-beat-offsets-sales-miss-2017-10-04). Seeds and pesticides giant Monsanto Co.(MON) shares rose after the agriculture products company reported a surprise fiscal fourth-quarter profit and sales growth.

Amazon.com Inc.'s stock (AMZN) was little changed after a European Union regulator ordered the e-commerce giant to pay about $300 million in back taxes (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/eu-orders-amazon-to-pay-250-million-in-back-taxes-to-luxembourg-2017-10-04) to Luxembourg. The order had been expected to come this week.

Office Depot Inc.(ODP) plunged 18% after the retailer late Tuesday said it's lowering its 2017 profit guidance and plans to pay $1 billion (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/office-depot-to-buy-compucom-for-1-billion-lowers-guidance-2017-10-03) for IT company CompuCom Systems Inc.

Shares in Verizon Communications Inc.(VZ) were little changed after the telecom announced late Tuesday that every Yahoo account was affected by a 2013 hack (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/every-yahoo-account-was-affected-by-2013-hack-verizon-now-says-2017-10-03). Verizon completed its acquisition (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/marissa-mayer-steps-down-as-verizon-acquisition-of-yahoo-is-complete-2017-06-13) of ailing internet pioneer Yahoo in June.

What other assets are doing

European stocks (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/spanish-stocks-lead-europe-lower-as-catalonia-dispute-intensifies-2017-10-04) traded lower, with Spain's IBEX benchmark among the biggest losers after Catalonia's leaders reiterated their pledge to declare independence while King Felipe VI said they have "undermined harmony." (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/spains-king-says-catalan-separatists-have-undermined-harmony-2017-10-03)

Asian markets largely closed with gains (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/hong-kong-stocks-flirt-with-10-year-high-2017-10-03), as Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index flirted with a 10-year high but then pared gains.

Oil futures and the ICE U.S. Dollar Index pulled back, while gold futures advanced.

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

October 04, 2017 10:15 ET (14:15 GMT)

Copyright (c) 2017 Dow Jones & Company, Inc.
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