By DAMIAN J. TROISE
AP Business Writer
Stocks edged higher in morning trading on Wall Street Friday, but are still on track for weekly losses.
The S&P 500 index rose 0.2% as of 10:21 a.m. Eastern. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 79 points, or 0.2%, to 35,997 and the Nasdaq rose 0.3%.
Technology stocks made solid gains, along with communications companies. Chipmaker Micron Technology rose 3.5% and Facebook parent Meta gained 1.9%.
A wide range of industrial and health care companies also rose. Johnson & Johnson rose 1.5% on news it’s splitting its Band-Aids and Listerine business from its medical device and prescription drug business.
Spectrum Brands, owner of Cutter bug spray and George Foreman grills, soared 11% after reporting strong quarterly earnings.
Banks and utilities fell. Bank of America slipped 1.3%.
Lordstown Motors slumped 11.4% after giving investors a discouraging production update, with delays stretching to the third quarter of 2022.
Bond yields were relatively stable. The yield on the 10-year Treasury remained at 1.55% from late Wednesday. The bond market was closed on Thursday.
The benchmark S&P 500 is headed for its first weekly loss in six weeks, along with the Dow and Nasdaq. The winning streak for stocks, which produced a series of record highs for the major indexes, came to an end as investors shifted focus from corporate earnings to rising inflation.
Investors reviewed mostly solid corporate report cards over the last several weeks. A wide range of companies showed that they were able to successfully navigate both the summer surge of COVID-19 cases and lingering supply chain problems.
Rising inflation, though, has been a lingering concern, with companies warning that higher raw materials costs and supply chain disruptions could crimp their finances. Prices have also been rising for consumer goods and essential items, raising concerns that people could pullback on spending and hurt the economic recovery.
Those inflation concerns were further stoked this week with discouraging reports on price increases for companies and consumers. On Tuesday, the Labor Department reported that inflation at the wholesale level surged to a record high in October. On Wednesday, the agency gave Wall Street a hotter-than-expected inflation report that showed consumer prices also surged, hitting their fastest overall pace since 1990.
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