Wall Street Drifts Higher in Quiet Trading


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Wall Street edged up on Monday in light trading as market participants parsed through a hodgepodge of deal news and corporate earnings.

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Today's Markets

According to preliminary calculations, the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 38.1 points, or 0.23%, to 16446, the S&P 500 rose 6.8 points, or 0.37%, to 1872 and the Nasdaq Composite rose 26 points, or 0.64%, to 4122.

The broad S&P 500 zoomed higher by 2.7% last week in its best performance since last summer. The move came as traders snatched up equities that were beaten down in the prior week.

Monday was off to a quiet start, with European markets closed for Easter Monday.

Traders were focusing on a report from Japan, that showed the trade deficit in the world's third-biggest economy swelling to 1.7 trillion yen on a seasonally-adjusted basis, well higher than the 1.4 trillion figure economists expected. The larger deficit figure was driven by a surge in imports that was coupled with only a small increase in exports, according to Japan-based investment bank Nomura.

In corporate news, Pfizer (NYSE:PFE) made a roughly $101 billion bid for British rival AstraZeneca (NYSE:AZN), according to news reports. The reports suggested the offer was rejected. Halliburton (NYSE:HAL) swung to a first-quarter profit. Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) posts its quarterly results after the closing bell.

Elsewhere, U.S. crude oil futures fell 12 cents, or 0.12%, to $104.17 a barrel. Wholesale New York Harbor gasoline dipped 0.39% to $3.04 a gallon. Gold dropped $9.10, or 0.7%, to $1,285 a troy ounce.

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