Stocks Traded Higher ahead of Powell Speech

U.S. stocks traded higher in early trading on Friday, as investors awaited a speech from Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell for clues on the direction of monetary policy. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately rose 65.68 points, or 0.26%, to 25,722.66. The S&P 500 added 8.14 points, or 0.28%, to 2,865.12. The Nasdaq Composite gained 37.72 points, or 0.48%, to 7,916.18.

Crude-oil futures popped higher Early Friday, as investors focused on tightening inventories, including signs of shrinking output from Iran. West Texas Intermediate crude for October delivery added 91 cents, or 1.3%, to $68.74 a barrel. October Brent crude picked up $1.04, or 1.4%, to $75.77 a barrel.

Orders for long-lasting U.S. factory goods fell 1.7 percent in July, the third decrease in the past four months. The Commerce Department said Friday that durable goods orders totaled $246.9 billion last month.

HP Inc (HPQ) reported better-than-expected quarterly results and raised its full-year adjusted profit forecast on Thursday. HP Inc’s personal systems business, which includes desktops and notebooks and accounts for more than 60 percent of total revenue, rose 12 percent to $9.4 billion. HP Inc raised its forecast for full-year adjusted profit to between $2 and $2.03 per share, from $1.97 and $2.02 per share earlier.

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