Wall Street Pushes Higher Amid Deal Flurry

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By Peter Nurse

Investing.com – U.S. stocks pushed higher after the open Monday, as global macro concerns eased and investors took on board positive company-specific news, including a flurry of midcap mergers and some upbeat earnings guidance.

The index was trading 6 points, or 0.2%, higher by 0935 ET (1435 GMT), with the up 33 points, or 0.4%. The gained 27 points, or 0.1%.

Fears of major military action in the Middle East have dimmed, although the Iranian authorities are under pressure from domestic protests over the downing of a Ukranian passenger plane last week. At the same time, the trade spat between China and the U.S., the two largest economies in the world, looks set to come to an end with Chinese negotiators traveling to Washington this week to sign a phase one trade deal with the U.S.

In M&A news, Woodward (NASDAQ:) stock rose 4.9% and Hexcel Corporation (NYSE:) stock rose 7% after the two companies – both big suppliers to Boeing (NYSE:) – announced an all-stock merger. The deal will allow the two companies to rationalize as they try to cope with the fallout from Boeing’s grounded 737 MAX.

Additionally, renewable energy generator TerraForm Power Inc (NASDAQ:) stock was up 10% after the company said it had received an unsolicited offer from Brookfield Renewable Partners for the 38% of the company that Brookfield doesn’t already own.

Looking at earnings, yogawear maker Lululemon Athletica (NASDAQ:) rose 6.1% after the company upgraded its revenue and earnings forecasts in the wake of a successful holiday season.

Earnings season will start in full force tomorrow, with the major banks starting to report. JPMorgan Chase (NYSE:), Citigroup (NYSE:) and Wells Fargo (NYSE:) are all due to present on Tuesday, against a background of undimmed optimism on Wall Street.

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