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US STOCKS-Wall St swings to gains as Apple hits record-high

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* Fed on track to raise rates twice more this year – Evans * Nasdaq hits yet another intraday high * Walt Disney higher as ‘Beauty and the Beast’ tops boxoffice * Indexes up: Dow 0.18 pct, S&P 0.03 pct, Nasdaq 0.20 pct (Adds details, changes comment, updates prices) By Tanya Agrawal March 20 (Reuters) – U.S. stocks reversed course to tradeslightly higher in late morning trading on Monday, helped by arise in technology stocks including Apple. Apple rose nearly 1 percent, hitting a newrecord-high of $141.34, lifting the tech-heavy Nasdaq Compositeindex to yet another intraday high. The iPhone-maker’s stock could rise another 10 percent insix months, Barron’s wrote in an article posted Saturday. The U.S. stock market has been on record-setting spree sincethe election of Donald Trump as president, but the rally hasfaltered in recent weeks as investors fret over the lack ofclarity on his proposals to reform taxes and cut regulation. Analysts have also said the Trump administration is spendingtoo much of its political capital to pass a Republican-proposedhealthcare bill, which may leave it wanting for support when ittries to reform the tax code. “With tax reform and infrastructure spending getting pushedto the end of this year or even next year, it will eventuallyweigh on sentiment and business confidence,” said RandyFrederick, vice president of trading and derivatives for CharlesSchwab in Austin, Texas. “Eventually, the market will lose patience,” Frederick said. At 10:53 a.m. ET (1453 GMT), the Dow Jones IndustrialAverage was up 36.91 points, or 0.18 percent, at20,951.53. The S&P 500 was up 0.93 points, or 0.03 percent, at2,379.18. The Nasdaq Composite was up 12.01 points, or 0.2percent, at 5,913.01. Seven of the 11 major S&P sectors were lower, with theenergy index’s 0.68 percent fall leading the decliners. Oil fell as investors continued to unwind bets on higherprices. The U.S. Federal Reserve’s conservative rate guidance isalso keeping the market in check. All eyes will be on FederalReserve Bank of Chicago President Charles Evans when he speakslater in the day. In an interview with Fox Business Network TV earlier onMonday, Evans said the Fed is on track to raise interest ratestwice more this year. A host of Fed officials are scheduled to speak this week,including Chair Janet Yellen on Thursday. Last week, the central bank raised interest rates for thefirst time this year but stuck to its outlook for two more hikesthis year, instead of three expected by the market. Among stocks, Movado fell 5.70 percent to $22.25after the watchmaker’s quarterly results missed expectations. Walt Disney rose 1.1 percent to $112.96 after themedia and entertainment company’s “Beauty and the Beast” toppedbox-office sales. The stock was the second-biggest boost on theDow. Declining issues outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by 1,507to 1,242. On the Nasdaq, 1,460 issues fell and 1,229 advanced. The S&P 500 index showed 21 new 52-week highs and two newlows, while the Nasdaq recorded 77 new highs and 20 new lows. (Reporting by Tanya Agrawal in Bengaluru; Editing by AnilD’Silva and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty)

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