Stocks rise…GM beats forecast…Construction spending falls
NEW YORK (AP) – Stocks are higher in morning trading on Wall Street as investors were reassured by solid earnings reports from several big-name companies. General Motors rose after reporting earnings that beat analysts’ expectations. Western Digital jumped after the hard drive maker released results that also beat forecasts. Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to just under 2%.
DETROIT (AP) – General Motors reported a second-quarter profit that rose just over 1% as strong sales of higher-priced pickups and SUVs overcame falling global sales. The Detroit automaker says it made $2.42 billion, or $1.66 per share, from April through June. Excluding adjustments for restructuring costs, the company made $1.64 per share. That soundly beat Wall Street estimates of $1.44.
WASHINGTON (AP) – Spending on U.S. construction projects fell 1.3% in June, the largest amount in seven months which reflects weakness in home building, nonresidential construction and the largest drop in government projects in 17 years. Government spending was down 3.7%, the biggest decline since a 6% drop in March 2002.
WASHINGTON (AP) – U.S. factory activity expanded at a slower rate in July, as measures of production and employment fell. The Institute for Supply Management, an association of purchasing managers, says its manufacturing index slipped to 51.2 last month from 51.7 in June. Any reading above 50 signals an expansion. Although it was the 35th straight month of growth in manufacturing, it was the fourth month in a row that the pace of growth slowed.
BEIJING (AP) – China’s factory activity contracted in July for a third straight month amid a tariff war with Washington and weak domestic demand. An industry group says the measure showed China’s economic downturn was slowing, but the economy still faces “downward pressure.” Manufacturing has been hurt by U.S. tariff increases in a fight over Beijing’s technology policies. Demand from Chinese consumers also has weakened, hurt by uncertainty about China’s falling economic growth rate.