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Apple, Boeing lead Wall Street higher

Credit: REUTERS/BRENDAN MCDERMID

Wall Street edged higher on Wednesday, led by gains in Boeing and Apple shares, even as weak earnings from Caterpillar and Texas Instruments raised concerns about the impact of the U.S.-China trade war on global growth.

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Apple boosts S&P 500, Boeing lifts Dow

Caterpillar dips after lowering profit forecast

Texas Instruments leads declines among chip stocks

Boston Scientific, Thermo Fisher jump on upbeat profits

Indexes up: Dow 0.09%, S&P 0.09%, Nasdaq 0.01%

Updates market action, adds comment

By Shreyashi Sanyal and Arjun Panchadar

Oct 23 (Reuters) - Wall Street edged higher on Wednesday, led by gains in Boeing and Apple shares, even as weak earnings from Caterpillar and Texas Instruments raised concerns about the impact of the U.S.-China trade war on global growth.

Apple Inc's AAPL.O shares rose 1.2% after Morgan Stanley said the iPhone maker's soon-to-be-launched video streaming service, Apple TV+, could boost its services revenue.

But the tit-for-tat tariff moves between the United States and China prompted profit and revenue warnings from Texas Instruments TXN.O and Caterpillar Inc CAT.N.

Texas Instruments, seen as a proxy for the microchip sector, dropped 6.7%, while industrial bellwether Caterpillar slipped 0.5%. The stocks weighed on the Philadelphia Semiconductor index .SOX and the S&P 500 industrials sector .SPLRCI, respectively.

"It's pretty clear there were some tough numbers coming out from bellwether type names like Caterpillar and Boeing, and certainly in the case of Boeing, people are shrugging it off," said Josh Wein, portfolio manager at Hennessy Funds in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.

Boeing's shares rose 2%, lifting the blue-chip Dow Jones index, after the world's largest planemaker reaffirmed the timeline for its grounded 737 MAX's return to service, as investors looked past a 53% drop in quarterly profit.

The S&P 500 has hovered near its record high this week after signs of progress in trade talks between the world's top two economies.

Investors are now waiting for results from big tech firms, with Microsoft Corp MSFT.O scheduled to report after markets close.

The earnings season has largely been upbeat with more than 82% of the 124 S&P 500 companies that have reported so far surpassing earnings expectations, according to Refinitiv data. But analysts still project the first earnings contraction since 2016.

At 12:09 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average .DJI was up 24.58 points, or 0.09%, at 26,812.68, while the S&P 500 .SPX was up 2.74 points, or 0.09%, at 2,998.73. The Nasdaq Composite .IXIC was up 0.83 points, or 0.01%, at 8,105.12.

A 1.6% gain in Facebook FB.O boosted the tech heavy index after CEO Mark Zuckerberg sought to reassure U.S. lawmakers about its planned digital currency, Libra.

A handful of healthcare companies with low exposure to China rose on strong results, helping the S&P 500 healthcare sector .SPXHC climb 0.87%.

Alexion Pharmaceuticals ALXN.O jumped 7% after raising full-year forecast, while medical device makers Boston Scientific Corp BSX.N and Thermo Fisher Scientific TMO.N both gained about 6% after upbeat profits.

However, Eli Lilly and Co LLY.N fell 2.8% after the drugmaker missed third-quarter revenue estimates.

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 1.79-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and by a 1.27-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

The S&P index recorded 13 new 52-week highs and one new low, while the Nasdaq recorded 40 new highs and 48 new lows.

(Reporting by Shreyashi Sanyal and Arjun Panchadar in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva and Sriraj Kalluvila)

((Shreyashi.Sanyal@thomsonreuters.com; +1 646 223 8780))

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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