S&P 500, Nasdaq hit record highs on IBM, chip power
By Sruthi Shankar (Reuters) - The S&P 500 and Nasdaq hit record highs on Wednesday as a strong forecast from IBM added to optimism over corporate earnings, while investors assessed risks from a virus outbreak in China. International Business Machines Corp shares jumped 3.4% after it forecast full-year profit above market expectations on strength in its high-margin cloud computing business. Technology stocks , which have played a big role in Wall Street's recent record run, rose 0.9%, with chip stocks gaining after a strong forecast from Dutch semiconductor equipment maker ASML Holding NV .
By Sruthi Shankar
(Reuters) - The S&P 500 and Nasdaq hit record highs on Wednesday as a strong forecast from IBM added to optimism over corporate earnings, while investors assessed risks from a virus outbreak in China.
International Business Machines Corp
Technology stocks <.SPLRCT>, which have played a big role in Wall Street's recent record run, rose 0.9%, with chip stocks gaining after a strong forecast from Dutch semiconductor equipment maker ASML Holding NV
The Philadelphia Semiconductor index <.SOX> rose 1.4%.
Meanwhile, China stepped up measures to curb the outbreak of a new flu-like virus that has killed 17 and infected 540 in the country, reassuring investors worried about its fallout.
Travel and airline stocks recovered moderately from sharp losses in the previous session as the outbreak revived fears of a pandemic similar to the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in 2003 and came ahead of the Chinese Lunar New Year when millions of people travel.
The NYSE Arca airlines index <.XAL> rose 1% after dropping 2.6% on Tuesday.
"Certainly, the market is spooked by it," said Phil Blancato, chief executive officer of Ladenburg Thalmann Asset Management in New York.
"But when markets are overvalued - like they are right now, any small hint of concern will send the market into a volatile moment."
At 1:23 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> rose 0.16% to 29,243.34.
The S&P 500 <.SPX> gained 0.31% to 3,331.00 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> was up 0.58% at 9,425.19.
Among other weak spots was Johnson & Johnson
The Dow came under pressure as Boeing Co
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 1.33-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 1.25-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
The S&P index recorded 106 new 52-week highs and two new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 152 new highs and 23 new lows.
(Reporting by Sruthi Shankar and Ambar Warrick in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila and Arun Koyyur)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
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