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EDITIONS

WALL STREET MARKET REPORT
0

Tuesday close

Shares settled slightly higher, lifted by news of stronger than expected earnings at three leading Wall Street brokerages.

The Dow Jones index of leading shares closed 0.4% higher at 9,576, while the technology-oriented Nasdaq settled up 1.5% at 1,902.

The rally reflected better than expected quarterly earnings from Wall Street giants Goldman Sachs, Lehman Brothers, and Morgan Stanley, which offset concerns over a sharp fall in the value of the dollar.

The greenback has been losing ground since the weekend, when a meeting of the G7 group of rich countries said that currency values should be set by market forces, casting doubt over the US government's traditional commitment to maintaining the dollar strong.

A weaker dollar boosts US-based exporters, but also fuels inflation by making imported goods more expensive, putting pressure on the Fed to raise interest rates.

Telecoms giant Verizon fell $1.58 to $33.13 after warning that it would miss analysts' full-year earnings forecasts because of weaker than expected spending by businesses.

Defence stocks also fell after a broker downgraded several of the sector's key companies.

Analysts said the market is bracing itself for the start of the third quarter reporting season, with traders hoping that strong numbers will confirm recent signs that the US economy is on the mend.

Hopes of a rebound have helped boost the Dow by a quarter since the market touched the bottom of a three-year slump in mid-March.

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