Stocks stepped back from earlier gains but investors largely shrugged off the U.S. government shutdown, choosing to focus on an upbeat manufacturing activity report and the likelihood that the shutdown would have only a small-scale impact on growth.
Broad anticipation of political gridlock seems to have cushioned the shutdown's blow to financial markets, and investors have been desensitized by a series of last-minute budget deals in recent years, all of which were followed by stock gains.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq traded well ahead of the S&P; Apple rose 2.3% after Carl Icahn said he pushed for a $150B buyback during a meeting with Tim Cook.
Short-term T-bill yields spiked on fears the securities wouldn’t get paid because of the debt ceiling, even as the longer end of the yield curve rose on expectations of a timely solution.
Gold futures dropped more than $40/oz. to $1,286, their lowest settlement in almost two months.