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MarketWatch MarketPulseJun 24, 2019
Stocks end mostly lower as Iran sanctions hurt oil sector
U.S. stocks ended mostly lower on Monday, with only the blue-chip Dow managing to hold onto slight gains, as geopolitical tensions in the Middle East weighed on the oil sector. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 9 points, or less than 0.1%, to around 26,728, based on preliminary numbers. The S&P 500 was down 0.2% to finish around 2,945. The Nasdaq Composite fell 0.3% to end around 8,006. President Donald Trump signed an executive order sanctioning Iran's leaders. The U.S. and Iran have been stuck in a simmering dispute over attacks on tankers near the Strait of Hormuz and the downing of a U.S. drone last week. U.S. oil futures settled higher on Monday, even as energy stocks were among the worst performers for the day. Investors were mostly focused on the upcoming G-20 meeting at the end of the week, with many hoping President Donald Trump and Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping will reach a deal to prevent a further escalation in trade tensions. Shares of Caesars Entertainment Corp. jumped 15% after the casino operator consented to a buyout by Eldorado Resorts Inc.

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MarketWatch MarketPulseJun 24, 2019
Disney's stock falls after 'Toy Story 4' box office sets franchise record but was well below forecasts
Shares of Walt Disney Co. fell 1.1% in morning trade Monday, after the company's "Toy Story 4" dominated the weekend box office, which broke records for the franchise, but came up well short of expectations. Disney's stock has now lost 2.3% since closing at a record $142.02 on Thursday. The movie's domestic box office (DMO) take was estimated at $118.0 million, according to Box Office Mojo, exceeding the previous franchise opening record of $110.3 million by "Toy Story 3" in 2010, and more than 8-times second place "Child's Play," which had an opening DMO of $14.1 million. But as MKM Partners analyst Eric Handler said, "'Toy Story 4' was a hit, but not the mega-hit we hoped," as the DMO came up far below his estimate of $170 million, and the pre-release tracking of $150 million to $200 million range. He said the slower-than-expected start of the movie will likely weigh on 2Q revenue. "That said, given the spectacular critic reviews and a very positive audience CinemaScore ('A' exit polling rating)," Handler said the film should have long legs. The stock has rallied 28% year to date, to biggest gainer among Dow Jones Industrial Average components over that period, as the Dow has gained 5.0%.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit for more information on this news.

MarketWatch MarketPulseJun 24, 2019
Microsoft stock rallies toward 8th-straight gain, 6th-straight record
Shares of Microsoft Corp. surged 0.9% in afternoon trading Monday, putting them on track for an 8th-straight gain, as Oppenheimer technical analyst Ari Wald said the software giant was a "top buy" given the long-term bullish technical backdrop. That would mark the second 8-day win streak this year, and third since it went 9-straight sessions ending Oct. 16, 2017 without a decline. The last time it rose for nine-straight days was the 9-day stretch ending Oct. 21, 2013. Microsoft's stock was also headed toward a 6th-straight record close day. "[Microsoft's stock] checks all our boxes," Wald wrote in a note to clients. "Key positives include the stock's bullish trend, high momentum score and top-down tailwinds based on our view that the technology sector is a prime candidate to be a key driver of the S&P 500's secular advance over the coming quarters to years." The stock has run up 35.4% year to date, as it continues to hold the top spot as the U.S.'s largest company by market capitalization, with a market cap of $1.054 trillion. The company is way ahead of second-place Inc. at $938.7 billion and third-place Apple Inc. at $919.3 billion.

Market Pulse Stories are Rapid-fire, short news bursts on stocks and markets as they move. Visit for more information on this news.

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