Stocks start higher; J&J leads gains for health care sector

Stocks are moving modestly higher on Wall Street in early trading Tuesday as corporate earnings reporting gets into full swing. The benchmark S&P 500 was up 0.3% in the first few minutes of trading, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.2%. Health care companies were making some of the biggest gains in the early going. Johnson & Johnson climbed 1.8% after raising its 2021 profit forecast again. Insurance company Travelers rose 2.6% after releasing results that easily beat analysts’ forecasts. The first exchange-traded fund to track Bitcoin futures rose 3% on its first day of trading.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP’s earlier story follows below.

BEIJING (AP) — European stocks opened lower while Asian markets advanced Tuesday as investors waited for U.S. corporate results to see how companies are coping with supply disruptions and the last quarter’s surge in coronavirus infections.

Shanghai, Tokyo and Hong Kong gained, while London and Frankfurt declined.

Wall Street futures were higher after the benchmark S&P 500 index rose Monday, propelled by tech and consumer stocks.

”It was a good day to be a mega-cap tech stock,” said Edward Moya of Oanda in a report.

In early trading, the FTSE 100 in London was off less than 0.1% at 7,202.29. The DAX in Frankfurt lost less than 0.1% to 15,470.80. The CAC 40 in Paris was flat at 6,671.16.

On Wall Street, futures for the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average were up 0.1%.

The S&P 500 gained 0.3% on Monday while the Dow lost 0.1%. The Nasdaq composite advanced 0.8%.

In Asia on Tuesday, the Shanghai Composite Index rose 0.7% to 3,593.15 and the Nikkei 225 in Tokyo advanced 0.6% to 29,215.52. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong added 1.4% to 25,771.24.

The Kospi in Seoul was 0.7% higher at 3,029.04 and Sydney’s S&P-ASX 200 ended less than 0.1% lower at 7,374.90.

India’s Sensex gained 0.7% to 62,189.17. New Zealand and Singapore advanced while Bangkok and Jakarta declined.

Health care giant Johnson & Johnson, United Airlines and streaming entertainment service Netflix were due to report earnings Tuesday. American Airlines and Southwest Airlines follow Thursday.

Companies are warning that supply disruptions stemming from the pandemic are hampering production and could hurt them financially.

Investors worry that is fueling inflation and might slow an economic recovery.

“The inflation pressures we expected are here — and are persistent,” researchers at the BlackRock Investment Institute said in a report.

The S&P 500 is within about 1.1% of its Sept. 2 all-time high after gaining 1.8% last week.

On Monday, chipmaker Nvidia rose 1.6% and Target rose 3.2%.

Those gains were tempered by losses for health care and other companies. Medical device vendor Medtronic fell 5.5%.

Also Tuesday, the Commerce Department was due to report on September housing starts.

On Monday, Toyota Motor Co. rose 1.3% after announcing plans to build a $1.3 billion factory in the United States to make batteries for electric and gas-electric hybrid vehicles. TV station owner Sinclair Broadcasting fell 2.9% after reporting a data breach.

Also Monday, Federal Reserve on Monday reported an unexpectedly big 1.3% drop in U.S. industrial production. Nearly half of that was blamed on lingering effects of Hurricane Ida.

In energy markets, benchmark U.S. crude gained 72 cents to $82.41 per barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price international oils, rose 50 cents to $84.83 per barrel in London.

The dollar fell to 114.03 yen from Monday’s 114.26 yen. The euro rose to $1.1651 from $1.1610.