Wall Street gains as focus shifts to earnings | Reuters

By Yashaswini Swamynathan

U.S. stocks edged higher on Monday and were on track to snap a three-day losing streak as investors shifted focus to the first-quarter earnings season, with geopolitical concerns taking a back seat.After a post-election rally, investors are now looking at corporate earnings to justify lofty valuations in the market. Profits of S&P 500 companies are estimated to have risen 10.4 percent, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.President Donald Trump's national security adviser, H.R. McMaster, said on Sunday the United States, its allies and China were working on a range of responses to North Korea's latest failed ballistic missile test. However, McMaster indicated that Trump was not considering military action for now.

"We got in and out of the long weekend without any major news or controversy on the geopolitical front," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Equity Capital Markets in New York. "The anticipation of better earnings from the first quarter may shift the momentum in the favor of this market at least in the near-term."At 11:03 a.m. ET (1503 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 98.76 points, or 0.48 percent, at 20,552.01, the S&P 500 was up 10.62 points, or 0.46 percent, at 2,339.57 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 30.24 points, or 0.52 percent, at 5,835.39.

Ten of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors were higher, led by technology, which was up for the first time in 11 days.Among stocks, Amazon.com was up 1 percent at $893.86 after Credit Suisse raised its price target to $1050 from $900. The online retailer's shares also provided the biggest boost to the S&P and the Nasdaq.

Netflix , which is scheduled to report results after the market closes on Monday, was up 2.6 percent at $146.66, boosting the S&P consumer discretionary sector. Arconic was the biggest percentage gainer on the S&P, with a 6 percent gain, after Chief Executive Klaus Kleinfeld resigned amid pressure from activist hedge fund Elliott Management. Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 1,986 to 828. On the Nasdaq, 1,736 issues rose and 921 fell.The S&P 500 index showed four 52-week highs and no lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 20 highs and 32 lows. (Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva)

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Published Date: Apr 17, 2017 10:30 pm | Updated Date: Apr 17, 2017 10:30 pm