Wall Street opening higher … US consumer spending rebounds in March … US pending home sales tick up in March
NEW YORK (AP) – Stocks are opening higher following a spate of buyout announcements and strong earnings reports. At 10:15 a.m. Eastern Time, the Dow was up 152 points, to 24,464. The S&P 500 was up 12 points to 2,681. And the Nasdaq was up 45 points to 7,165.
WASHINGTON (AP) – Slightly more Americans signed contracts to buy homes in March, yet higher mortgage rates and a shortage of available houses has lowered contract signings from a year ago. The National Association of Realtors says that its pending home sales index ticked up 0.4 percent last month to 107.6.
WASHINGTON (AP) – Americans boosted their spending by 0.4 percent in March, the best showing in three months. Meanwhile, a key gauge of inflation closely watched by the Federal Reserve rose at the fastest pace in more than a year. The result is an encouraging sign that economic growth, which slowed in the first quarter, will accelerate in the current quarter.
LOS ANGELES (AP) – A trip to the gas station this summer won’t break you, but it might hurt. Crude oil prices are near their highest level in more than three years and expected to climb higher, pushing up gasoline prices along the way. The government expects drivers to pay an average of 33 cents more per gallon as they head out on summer road trips compared with a year ago.
NEW YORK (AP) – Higher prices on McDonald’s menu led to surprisingly strong comparable-store sales during the first quarter, sending shares up sharply 3.7 percent in early trading today. Sales rose 2.9 percent at established restaurants in the U.S., the company’s biggest market. Worldwide, that figure rose 5.5 percent, which is a lot stronger than the 3.6 percent increase that industry analysts had forecast, according to a survey by FactSet.