Stocks Higher as Congress Reaches Debt Ceiling Agreement! Stocks on Wall Street were higher during the morning amid increasing signs that a deal would soon be reached in Washington to raise the country’s debt ceiling and to fully reopen the government. Near midday Senate leaders said a deal had been struck and expressed confidence that the new litigation would pass today. With a deal in place the market hit its highs of the day near noon, putting the S&P within 1% of its all-time high.
ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., the National Association of Home Builder’s housing market index for October fell to 55 from a prior reading of 58, where it was expected to hold. Also, last night Fitch Ratings placed the U.S. ‘AAA’ rating on “Watch Negative,” pending developments and events such as the duration of an agreement to raise the debt ceiling.
COMPANY NEWS: Bank of America (BAC) and PepsiCo (PEP) were two of the most notable companies reporting quarterly results this morning. Both reported headline earnings that beat forecast. Shares of the snack and soda giant rose over 1% in midday trading, while Bank of American gained over 2%.
MAJOR MOVERS: Among the notable gainers were shares of pharmaceutical company Abbott Laboratories (ABT), which advanced 5% after the company’s third quarter earnings topped estimates and it hiked its dividend 57% to 22c per share. Among the noteworthy losers was Stanley Black & Decker (SWK), which dropped 14% after the company lowered its fiscal 2013 earnings outlook. Also sliding after cutting its earning outlook was teen apparel and accessory retailer Wet Seal (WTSL), which declined 8%.
P Before printing this message, please make sure it is necessary.