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US STOCKS-Wall St flat ahead of long weekend
May 26, 2017 / 3:31 PM / 7 months ago

US STOCKS-Wall St flat ahead of long weekend

* Second reading of Q1 GDP up 1.2 pct vs. est. 0.9 pct

* Costco, Ulta Beauty rise on strong quarterly reports

* GameStop falls after maintaining full-year forecast

* Dow down 0.06 pct, S&P off 0.01 pct, Nasdaq up 0.06 pct (Adds details, changes comment and updates prices)

By Tanya Agrawal

May 26 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks were little changed in late morning trading on Friday, following six straight days of gains, as investors took a breather ahead of a three-day holiday weekend.

A strong batch of earnings reports from retailers drove the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite to a record close on Thursday, putting all three major indexes on track to post their strongest weekly gains since the end of April.

The six-day winning streak is the market’s longest since February and investors may look to cash in on their gains ahead of the long weekend due to Monday’s Memorial Day holiday.

Earlier in the day, a report showed that the U.S. economy grew at a 1.2 percent pace in the first quarter, slightly more than the 0.7 percent growth estimated earlier. The higher reading was in line with economists’ expectations.

“U.S. markets are generally flat this morning as we see a stronger revision to the first-quarter GDP data and better-than-expected durable goods orders,” said Emily Roland, head of investment research at John Hancock Investments in Boston.

“We’ve reached new highs and we expect days of strong gains. Investors may be taking a breather as we head into the holiday weekend.”

At 10:57 a.m. ET (1457 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 12.5 points, or 0.06 percent, at 21,070.45 and the S&P 500 was down 0.26 points, or 0.01 percent, at 2,414.81.

However, the Nasdaq Composite was up 3.73 points, or 0.06 percent, at 6,208.99.

Consumer stocks had another strong day, with the consumer staples index rising 0.23 percent and topping the list of gainers. The consumer discretionary index was also up 0.12 percent.

Shares of Costco Wholesale rose 1.9 percent to $178.09 and was among the biggest drivers of the S&P, after the warehouse club operator reported a strong profit.

Ulta Beauty jumped 3.3 percent, the most on the S&P, after the company raised its full-year forecast.

Deckers Outdoor Corp rose as much as 21 percent to a nine-month high after reporting a surprise quarterly profit.

Among the laggards, GameStop fell 6.7 percent to $22.02 as the videogame retailer left its full-year earnings forecast unchanged despite beating profit estimates.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers on the NYSE by 1,527 to 1,213. On the Nasdaq, 1,616 issues fell and 964 advanced.

The S&P 500 index showed 48 new 52-week highs and eight new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 63 new highs and 35 new lows. (Reporting by Tanya Agrawal in Bengaluru; Additional reporting by Gayathree Ganesan; Editing by Savio D‘Souza and Anil D‘Silva)

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