Stocks close higher as markets shift their attention from geopolitical turmoil to corporate earnings

syria airstrikes april 13 april 14Missiles streak across the Damascus skyline as the U.S. launches an attack on Syria targeting different parts of the capital, early Saturday, April 14, 2018.AP Photo/Hassan Ammar

Stocks rose Monday as focus shifted from geopolitical turmoil to corporate earnings reports. Markets seemed comforted by a lack of immediate Russian retaliation after the US and its allies carried out air strikes against the Syrian government on Friday.

Here's the scoreboard:

Dow Jones Industrial Average: 24,574.79 +214.65 (+0.88%)

S&P 500: 2,680.52 +24.22 (+0.91%)

AUD/USD: 0.7780 +0.0015 (+0.19%)

ASX 200 SPI futures: 5,822.5 (+14.50) (+0.25%)

  1. The S&P 500 briefly hit its highest level in almost a month. Pharmacy stocks led the index higher after Amazon said it's hitting the pause button on its plan to sell prescription drugs to hospitals.
  2. The US decided to hold back on issuing another round of sanctions on Russia. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley had previously said that the US would be hitting Moscow with more economic penalties Monday.
  3. Oil prices fell sharply as some officials said that another airstrike on Syria by the West is not imminent. Crude hit a three-year high last week ahead of airstrikes against the Assad regime carried out by the US, UK, and France.
  4. The dollar fell to its lowest level since last month after President Donald Trump accused China and Russia of currency devaluation in an unusual tweet. Neither of the countries are listed as currency manipulators by the US Treasury Department, and the Chinese yuan has actually been on the rise versus the dollar over the past year.
  5. Trump announced key appointments to the Federal Reserve. He tapped Columbia economist Richard Clarida as Vice Chairman and Kansas banking regulator Michelle Bowman to serve on the Board of Governors through 2020.

Here's Tuesday's economic calendar:

  • Data on US building permits and housing starts is out.
  • The UK will release unemployment and wage numbers.
  • The latest Melbourne Institute Leading Index is due.
  • Goldman Sachs reports earnings.
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