Pound down vs dollar after PM calls for election; S&P 500 gains
By Caroline Valetkevitch NEW YORK (Reuters) - The British pound fell against the dollar on Thursday after British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's call for a national election, while global stock markets edged higher. Johnson said he was asking Parliament to approve the election for Dec. 12 in an effort to break the country's deadlock over its exit from the European Union
By Caroline Valetkevitch
NEW YORK (Reuters) - The British pound fell against the dollar on Thursday after British Prime Minister Boris Johnson's call for a national election, while global stock markets edged higher.
Johnson said he was asking Parliament to approve the election for Dec. 12 in an effort to break the country's deadlock over its exit from the European Union.
Trading in Sterling was choppy following the news but the currency recovered from session lows. Sterling
EU member states on Wednesday delayed a decision on whether to grant Britain a three-month Brexit extension.
Third-quarter earnings reports took center stage again on Wall Street, where stocks ended mostly higher.
Upbeat earnings - including from Microsoft
"Right now we're seeing disparity in moves of the indexes. And that's due primarily to the flow of earnings announcements as they surprise to the upside and disappoint to the downside," said Bucky Hellwig, senior vice president at BB&T Wealth Management in Birmingham, Alabama.
"If consensus is building that a trough is occurring" in quarterly earnings changes, he said, that could end up being a positive for the stock market.
The latest estimate for third-quarter earnings for companies on the benchmark U.S. S&P 500 index improved slightly. Earnings now are expected to have declined 2.3% year-over-year in the quarter versus an estimated decline of 2.9% on Wednesday, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> fell 28.42 points, or 0.11%, to 26,805.53, the S&P 500 <.SPX> gained 5.77 points, or 0.19%, to 3,010.29 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> added 66.00 points, or 0.81%, to 8,185.80.
The S&P 500 briefly moved lower after comments from U.S. Vice President Mike Pence, who accused China of curtailing "rights and liberties" in Hong Kong but also insisted that the United States does not seek confrontation or to "de-couple" from its main economic rival.
The pan-European STOXX 600 index <.STOXX> rose 0.59% and MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe <.MIWD00000PUS> gained 0.37%.
Results from German companies including Daimler
In commodities markets, oil prices rose as a surprise drop in U.S. crude inventories and the prospect of further market-supporting action by OPEC and its allies offset some concern over the outlook for demand.
U.S. Treasury yields edged higher after trading lower for much of the session. Investors consolidated positions ahead of next week's Federal Reserve monetary policy meeting that is expected to result in an interest rate cut for a third time this year.
Benchmark 10-year notes
(Additional reporting by Devika Krishna Kumar in New York, Marc Jones in London and Sujata Rao; Editing by Bernadette Baum, Dan Grebler and Cynthia Osterman)
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