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Nasdaq Ends at Record in Mixed Trading on First Day of September

Stocks end mixed on the first trading day of September, as the Nasdaq closes at a record high.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq closed at a record high Wednesday in mixed trading as markets wrapped up the first day of September. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished down 48 points, or 0.14%, to 35,312, while the S&P edged up 0.03% and the Nasdaq, which also reached an intra-day high, closed up 0.33%.

The Nasdaq was bolstered by Apple  (AAPL) - Get Apple Inc. (AAPL) Report, which jumped to an all-time high following a Wall Street Journal story that said the tech giant will eventually include a tool to monitor blood pressure and a thermometer to help with fertility planning in its smartwatches.

On Tuesday, Nikkei Asia reported production of Apple's latest smartwatch reportedly has been delayed largely due to the device's complicated design.

Apple also announced that eight states will roll out a feature allowing users to add driver’s license and state IDs to Apple Wallet for iPhone and Apple Watch to use at security at participating airports.

In addition, Wolfe Research analyst Jeff Kvaal upgraded Apple to peer perform from underperform with a price target of $155, up from $135, according to the Fly.

Stocks ended lower on Tuesday, but ended August on a high note with the S&P 500 finishing a seventh month of gains

“Although this bull market has laughed at nearly all the worry signs in 2021, let’s not forget that September is historically the worst month of the year for stocks,” said LPL Financial Chief Market Strategist Ryan Detrick. 

“Even last year, in the face of a huge rally off the March 2020 lows, we saw a nearly 10% correction in the middle of September.”

In economic news, the ADP National Employment report showed a gain of 374,000 jobs in August. 

Economists surveyed by Dow Jones had expected the report to show the addition of 600,000 private sector jobs in August, CNBC reported.

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"While the weak ADP report is disappointing, it may not be entirely surprising as employers face challenges attracting candidates and cope with the delta variant," said Mike Loewengart, managing director of investment strategy at E-Trade Financial.

Loewengart said the private payrolls numbers have been all over the map during the pandemic, and often have not been the strongest indicator of how the rest of the jobs report will play out.

"But with so much pressure on improvement on the labor market front coming from the Fed, this could send a signal that jobs growth is stagnating," he said. "That’s likely a good thing for the markets though as it means easy money policy continues."

The ADP report will be followed by the nonfarm payroll employment report on Friday. Economists are forecasting that 750,000 jobs were created in August.

Separately, the Institute of Supply Management (ISM) reported that the purchasing managers' index (PMI) for August increased 0.4 percentage points to 59.9%. 

This was better than expectations of 58.5% and marked the 15th straight month of expansion in both the manufacturing sector and the economy overall.

Among the companies reporting, Nio  (NIO) - Get NIO Inc. Sponsored ADR Class A Report shares slipped after the Chinese electric vehicle maker lowered its third-quarter deliveries outlook to between 22,500 and 23,500 from 23,000 to 25,000 vehicles due to "continued uncertainty and volatility of semiconductor supply."

PVH Corp.  (PVH) - Get PVH Corp. Report shares finished higher after the apparel company's better-than-expected fiscal-second-quarter earnings and revenue prompted price-target boosts by Wall Street's analysts. The owner of Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger also raised its full-year guidance.

Campbell Soup  (CPB) - Get Campbell Soup Company Report rose after the soup, sauces, biscuits and confectionary maker's fiscal fourth-quarter sales and revenue came in ahead of Wall Street expectations. Campbell also approved a $500 million share repurchase program.

CrowdStrike  (CRWD) - Get CrowdStrike Holdings, Inc. Class A Report finished lower after the cybersecurity stock raised its financial projections for the year and projected revenue this quarter would be ahead of Wall Street forecasts.

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