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* Eastman Kodak plummets as govt loan agreement put on ice
* U.S. stimulus a catalyst for markets right now- Analyst
* S&P 500 gains for seventh straight session
* Indexes up: Dow 0.58%, S&P 0.23%, Nasdaq 0.17%
Aug 10 (Reuters) - Wall Street indexes opened a touch higher
on Monday after President Donald Trump signed executive orders
over the weekend to support the country's economy through the
coronavirus crisis until more concrete stimulus could be passed.
The S&P 500 traded about a percent below a record
high, while the Nasdaq hovered below a lifetime high
after a series of new peaks last week.
Trump's orders, that partly restored enhanced unemployment
benefits, came after talks between the White House and top
Democrats in Congress about fresh stimulus broke down.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, in an interview to
CNBC on Monday, said the Trump administration and Congress could
reach an agreement as soon as this week if Democrats are
Tensions between Washington and Beijing were also at play,
after Trump signed executive orders last week banning major
Chinese technology firms in 45 days' time while announcing
sanctions on 11 Chinese and Hong Kong officials.
Still, optimism over a better-than-expected earnings season
and hopes of more stimulus saw the S&P 500 extend gains into a
seventh straight session on Monday, while the Nasdaq scaled a
record high every day of last week.
After a strong tech-led rally over the past few months, "to
me it's about the U.S. stimulus as a catalyst for markets at
this point," said Tim Chubb, chief investment officer at Girard
in West Chester, Pennsylvania.
"I wouldn't we surprised if the markets were to close off a
little bit here and we start to see some unwinding in the
At 9:40 a.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was
up 158.41 points, or 0.58%, at 27,591.89, the S&P 500 was
up 7.76 points, or 0.23%, at 3,359.04. The Nasdaq Composite
was up 18.78 points, or 0.17%, at 11,029.76.
Seven of the 11 major S&P sectors traded higher, with energy
leading gains. Healthcare, real estate
and utilities underperformed.
Among individual movers, Eastman Kodak Co plunged
37.5% after its $765-million loan agreement with the U.S.
government to produce pharmaceutical ingredients was put on hold
due to "recent allegations of wrongdoing." Trading in its shares
was halted briefly due to volatility.
The No. 1 U.S. mall owner Simon Property Group rose
4% after a report that it has been in talks with Amazon.com Inc
about turning some of its department-store sites into
Amazon fulfillment centers.
Berkshire Hathaway Inc shares edged higher as its
second-quarter net income surged 87%.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 2.91-to-1 ratio
on the NYSE and by a 1.74-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
The S&P index recorded 18 new 52-week highs and no new low,
while the Nasdaq recorded 51 new highs and two new lows.
(Reporting by Ambar Warrick and Medha Singh in Bengaluru;
editing by Uttaresh.V)