Stocks inch higher as tech winning streak continues

NEW YORK — Major U.S. indexes are slightly higher Thursday as technology and retail stocks continue to rally. Energy companies and banks are slipping as a quiet week on Wall Street continues. Bond prices rose, sending yields lower, after the Labor Department reported that wholesale prices were little changed in July, a sign inflation pressures weakened slightly.

KEEPING SCORE: The S&P 500 index rose 2 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,860 as of 2:40 p.m. Eastern time. It’s on track for its sixth weekly gain in a row. The Dow Jones Industrial Average slipped 2 points to 25,580.

The Nasdaq composite was up for the eighth day in a row. It climbed 30 points, or 0.4 percent, to 7,918. The Russell 2000, an index of smaller companies, added 8 points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,695.

THURSDAY LEADERS: The Nasdaq has rallied almost 4 percent as technology companies recover from the sharp losses they took at the end of July.

Apple rose 1.1 percent to $209.58, and software maker Red Hat rose 1.7 percent to $145.26.

Amazon pulled retail companies higher, rising 1.2 percent to $1,909.56.

SHHHH: Trading this week has been light. The S&P 500 made a solid gain on Monday but has hardly budged since then. The VIX, a measure of how much volatility investors expect, has fallen to its lowest level since early January.

“It’s not that risk has gone away,” said JJ Kinahan, chief market strategist for TD Ameritrade. “Quantifiable risk is not there right now.”

Retailers including Macy’s and Nordstrom are scheduled to report their results next week, and Kinahan said stocks resume their upward climb if those companies say shoppers are still spending freely.

PRICES: The Labor Department said wholesale prices were unchanged in July, a sign inflation pressure weakened a bit. Gas and food

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