Business:
Stocks move lower in quiet trading; oil prices fall sharply

Stocks are moderately lower Monday as the market drifts between small gains and losses. A drop in oil prices pulled energy companies lower. Investors were looking ahead to the Federal Reserve's event in Jackson Hole, Wyo., for clues on timing for possible interest rate hikes.

The Dow Jones industrial average was down 44 points, or 0.2%, to 18,509 as of 12:05 p.m. EDT. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell five points, or 0.2%, to 2,179 and the Nasdaq composite fell nine points, or 0.2%, to 5,229.

DRUGMAKER MERGER: Cancer drug maker Medivation jumped $13.24, or 20%, to $80.40 after pharmaceutical giant Pfizer announced it would buy the company for $14 billion, or $81.50 a share.

Read the full story: Pfizer to pay $14 billion for Medivation, whose big cancer drug was discovered by UCLA >>

The Medivation deal pushed other biotechnology stocks higher as well. Regeneron Pharmaceuticals, Vertex Pharmaceuticals and Alexion Pharmaceuticals all were up 3% or more. Healthcare and utilities were the only two sectors to rise in the S&P 500 index.

90 seconds: 4 stories you can't miss Caption 90 seconds: 4 stories you can't miss

A dangerous trip home in flooded Louisiana, a controversial LAPD arrest on video, a possible shift in immigration policy from Trump and counterfeit drugs found at Prince's estate.

A dangerous trip home in flooded Louisiana, a controversial LAPD arrest on video, a possible shift in immigration policy from Trump and counterfeit drugs found at Prince's estate.

Weekend Roundup: 7 stories you can't miss Caption Weekend Roundup: 7 stories you can't miss

Read more about Louisiana flooding, the Clayton fire, the Blue Cut fire, kindergarten boot camp, the Share and Care program, Ryan Lochte and Donald Trump.

Read more about Louisiana flooding, the Clayton fire, the Blue Cut fire, kindergarten boot camp, the Share and Care program, Ryan Lochte and Donald Trump.

ENERGY WEAKNESS: Oil prices fell sharply. U.S. benchmark crude fell $1.46 to $47.65 a barrel and Brent crude, used to price oil internationally, declined $1.54 to $49.34 a barrel. The drop in energy prices dragged down energy stocks, which lost 1.1%, more than the rest of the market.

FED WATCH: Investors were looking ahead to a speech by Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen at an annual summer gathering in Jackson Hole for indications of how policymakers view the outlook for economic growth and interest rates. Analysts expect Yellen to express caution but support the impression the U.S. central bank is on track to raise rates as early as this year.

Although investors do not expect the central bank to raise interest rates at its September meeting, there's always the possibility and the increasing likelihood of a rate increase after the presidential election.

ALL QUIET: Trading is likely to be subdued this week, as it has been all month. Second-quarter earnings season is effectively over and the next major piece of economic data does not come until Friday, when Yellen will speak. The last time the S&P 500 had a move of 1% or more was July 8, when it rose 1.5%.

BONDS AND CURRENCIES: U.S. government bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 1.55% from 1.58% late Friday. The dollar rose to 100.43 yen from 100.24 yen. The euro fell to $1.1312 from $1.1324.

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Source:   latimes
Source Link:   latimes

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