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* Apple rises after JPM starts coverage with “overweight”
* Amazon gains; other FAANG stocks also higher
* Conagra falls on revenue miss, weighs on other food cos
* Futures up: Dow 0.16 pct, S&P 0.18 pct, Nasdaq 0.38 pct (Adds comment, prices; updates prices)
By Amy Caren Daniel
Sept 27 (Reuters) - Wall Street pointed to a slightly higher opening on Thursday, helped by a bump in high-flying stocks such as Apple and Amazon, and the Federal Reserve’s confidence in the strength of the economy as it raised rates for the third time this year.
The Fed, as expected, raised interest rates on Wednesday, and left its monetary policy outlook for the coming years largely unchanged amid steady economic growth and a strong job market, adding it did not expect any surprises on inflation.
Wall Street initially rose after the statement on Wednesday, but pulled back to close lower.
“We had a good flush in the last few hours of yesterday, so today we are going to catch a little bit of a bounce,” said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at B. Riley FBR in New York.
“The FAANG group hasn’t done a whole lot in the past two weeks but go down, and now that we’re on the other side of the Fed decision, perhaps they can catch a bit of a relief rally.”
Shares of Apple rose 1.5 percent in premarket trading after JP Morgan started coverage with an “overweight” rating, citing the iPhone maker’s quicker-than-expected move to a services business.
Amazon.com rose 0.8 percent after brokerage Stifel talked up the company’s retail, cloud, and advertising businesses, even as the online retailer was set to open a brick-and-mortar store in New York City.
The other so-called FAANG stocks - Facebook, Netflix and Google-parent Alphabet - were also trading higher.
U.S. economic growth accelerated in the second quarter at its fastest pace in nearly four years as previously estimated, putting the economy on track to hit the Trump administration’s goal of 3 percent annual growth.
At 9:08 a.m. ET, Dow e-minis were up 42 points, or 0.16 percent. S&P 500 e-minis were up 5.25 points, or 0.18 percent and Nasdaq 100 e-minis were up 28.75 points, or 0.38 percent.
Accenture shares fell 2.3 percent as the consulting and outsourcing services company’s full-year profit fell slightly short of analysts’ estimates.
Conagra and McCormick, both dropped about 5 percent, after the food companies posted quarterly revenue that missed analysts’ estimates.
Their results weighed on Kraft Heinz, Mondelez , General Mills, J M Smucker and Campbell Soup, which fell between 0.6 percent and 1.3 percent.
Geron plunged 68.5 percent after Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen ended a collaboration to develop a blood disorder drug. (Reporting by Amy Caren Daniel in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D’Silva)