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The Nasdaq Composite and S&P 500 hit fresh records yesterday as investors took heart in mostly solid U.S. fourth-quarter corporate earnings and looked beyond concerns about the coronavirus outbreak’s potential disruption to global supply chains.

 

Shares of the wireless carrier Sprint soared more than 60% yesterday afternoon after the Wall Street Journal reported its pending merger with T-Mobile U.S. Inc. is expected to be approved by a federal judge. Shares of T-Mobile rallied about 10%. The Journal said the judge's ruling, which would clear the way for the $26 billion merger, could be made public today. The tie-up of the nation's third- and fourth-largest wireless carriers was agreed upon two years ago, but has been held up over antitrust concerns.

 

Mortgage rates have dropped to the lowest levels since before the 2016 presidential election.  The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.45% during the week ending Feb. 6, a decrease of six basis points from the previous week. This was the third consecutive week in which mortgage rates dropped.The last time the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was at or below this level was in October 2016, when it averaged 3.42%.  The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage also fell three basis points to 2.97%.

 

In other corporate news, Xerox raised its offer to buy HP Inc to $24 per share, or about $34 billion. That’s up from a $22 per share offer made by Xerox in November. Xerox shares gained 1.4% while HP advanced 1%.

 

With Northwest Quadrant Wealth Management, I’m Tyler Simones.

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