Stocks – S&P Pares Gains as China's New Virus Spreads

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© Reuters. © Reuters. – The S&P closed about flat Wednesday as news of more deaths from the deadly flu-like virus that originated in China soured investor sentiment, but losses were kept in check by ongoing momentum in tech.

The added 0.03%, while the rose 0.14% and the sipped 0.03%.

Late-selling unfolded ahead of the close as sentiment was hit on reports that the death toll from the coronavirus had increased to 17, raising fears of contagion.

But tech stocks continued to shine, driven by a pop in shares of IBM (NYSE:) as investors cheered Big Blue’s return to revenue growth and quarterly results beat.

Chip stocks also led the charge higher for tech, with Intel (NASDAQ:) and Texas Instruments (NASDAQ:) rising 3% and 2% respectively, as chipmaker ASML’s (NASDAQ:) bullish outlook for the sector lifted investor sentiment.

A fall in Netflix (NASDAQ:), however, kept a lid on tech as the streaming giant’s weaker outlook on growth raised concerns about the impact of rising competition from rivals like Walt Disney (NYSE:).

Elsewhere, Tesla (NASDAQ:) eased from highs to end the day up 4% following bullish remarks from Wedbush, who raised its price target on the stock by nearly 50% to $580 on expectations of increased demand from China.

Energy, meanwhile, slumped after the International Energy Agency warned of surplus in oil supplies by 1 million barrels per day in the first half of this year.

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