© Reuters.

Investing.com – Stocks finished at new closing highs Monday and hit intraday highs in the process. The gains were modest, however, because of unease about whether a U.S.-China trade deal really will get done.

The hit a new high of 3,124.17 before falling back to a 1.6-point gain, or 0.05%, to 3,122.03. The index was held back by slumping energy stocks.

The was up 0.11% after peaking at 28,040.97 in the morning. The Nasdaq and were up 0.11% and 0.16%, respectively. Both hit new highs earlier in the session.

In addition to the China concerns, the market was held back by declining energy stocks after fell. Also declining: industrial and pharmaceutical stocks.

Walt Disney (NYSE:), UnitedHealth Group (NYSE:) and Nike (NYSE:) were among the leaders. Chevron Corp (NYSE:, Caterpillar (NYSE:) and Exxon Mobil (NYSE:) were the weakest Dow stocks.

The U.S.-China negotiations appeared to be stalled, despite Trump Administration assurances last week that negotiations were progressing. Reports from Bloomberg News and CNBC over the weekend and Monday morning painted more complicated pictures of the status of the talks, with intense disputes in the Administration and Chinese pessimism a deal can be done.

The Administration did agree to a new 90-day extension that lets U.S. companies continue doing business with China’s Huawei Technologies Co. as U.S. regulators continue crafting rules on telecommunications firms that pose national security risks. Chip stocks were initially higher on the new but fell back.

President Donald Trump and Treasury Steve Mnuchin met Monday with Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, who repeated the reasons why the Fed has decided to put interest-rate cuts hold. Trump later pronounced the meeting cordial. Interest rates moved lower, with the Treasury yield falling to 1.815% from 1.834% on Friday.

Apple (NASDAQ:), Microsoft (NASDAQ:), Google parent Alphabet (NASDAQ:), Applied Materials (NASDAQ:) and O’Reilly Automotive (NASDAQ:) were among stocks hitting new highs Monday.

U.S. stocks have been pushing higher because of strong consumer spending and low unemployment, coupled with low inflation.

U.S. stocks have been pushing higher because of strong consumer spending and low unemployment, coupled with low inflation.

The finished Monday up 20.2% for the year after falling 5.6% in 2018. The S&P 500 is up 24.5% after a 6.2% gain in 2018. The Nasdaq’s 2019 gain is now 28.9% after a 3.9% decline in 2918. The bulk of the stock market’s 2018 losses came in the fourth quarter.

Bulls are very confident about the market going forward. Volatility indices have fallen 50% this year.

But the major averages are showing signs of getting ahead of themselves. Their relative strength indexes, a momentum gauge, are all above 70, with the finishing Monday above 76. Both are signals that stocks may be overbought and vulnerable to sudden pullbacks. Apple’s RSI was at 79 at Monday’s close. Microsoft (NASDAQ:), which closed above $150 for the first time, has an RSI of 73. Walt Disney’s RSI is at 71.

Chipmaker NVIDIA (NASDAQ:), brokerage Jefferies Financial Group (NYSE:)l, broadcaster Discovery (NASDAQ:) and chipmaker Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ:) were among the top S&P 500 stocks.

ABIOMED Inc (NASDAQ:), Cabot Oil & Gas (NYSE:), Noble Energy (NYSE:) and Helmerich and Payne (NYSE:) were among the worst S&P 500 performers.

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2019-11-18