Amazon, Home Depot Take Indexes to New Highs

(Reuters) —

Wall Street indexes hit new intra-day highs on Cyber Monday as an expected surge in online sales boosted Amazon and home improvement retailers climbed after strong home sales data.

Shares in the world’s largest online retailer rose as much as 2.3 percent to hit an all-time high of $1,213.41.

Adobe Analytics has estimated that Cyber Monday would generate $6.6 billion in internet sales, which would make it the largest U.S. online shopping day in history.

Home Depot and Lowe’s gained about 1.5 percent after data showed a surprise rise in sales of new U.S. single-family homes in October. Sales rose to their highest level in ten years, according to the report.

“Investors are looking at retail stocks as Black Friday and Cyber Monday have been a good start to the [shopping] season, and much stronger data on new home sales has lifted the market higher,” said Kim Forrest, research analyst at Fort Pitt Capital Group in Pittsburgh.

At 11:32 a.m. ET the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 33.9 points, or 0.14 percent, at 23,591.89, the S&P 500 was down 1.44 points, or 0.06 percent, at 2,600.98. The Nasdaq Composite was down 15.48 points, or 0.22 percent, at 6,873.68.

However, declines in energy and semiconductor shares limited the gains.

Energy stocks dipped as oil prices slipped, with U.S. crude falling more than 2 percent on expectations of increased output.

Chevron was down 0.7 percent and Exxon 0.32 percent.

Western Digital fell nearly 7 percent after Morgan Stanley downgraded the stock to “equal-weight”, citing deteriorating prices for some products and uncertainty over a joint venture with Toshiba Memory.

Weighing on the sector was an analyst report that suggested that the memory chip “super cycle” would soon fade.

Other chipmakers also fell. Micron Technology fell 4 percent, while Marvell Technology slipped 1.7 percent.

The broader Philadelphia semiconductor index was on track to post its biggest percentage loss in more than two weeks.

Time Inc was up 9 percent after media company Meredith said it would buy the publisher of People, Sports Illustrated and Fortune magazines in a $1.84 billion deal. Meredith was up nearly 10 percent.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by 1,673 to 1,101. On the Nasdaq, 1,642 issues fell and 1,140 advanced.

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