* Home Depot top stock on Dow after profit beat
* Pfizer down after Citi cuts to "sell"
* Indexes up: Dow 0.18 pct, S&P 0.09 pct, Nasdaq 0.14 pct
(Updates to open)
By Yashaswini Swamynathan
May 16 The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq drifted higher
to hit record intraday levels on Tuesday, supported by gains in
technology and consumer staple stocks.
As the first-quarter earnings season wraps up, investors'
attention will turn to developments in Washington that could
overshadow Republican legislative priorities such as tax reform,
healthcare and simpler regulations.
Investors were wary after reports that President Donald
Trump disclosed highly classified information to Russia's
foreign minister about a planned Islamic State operation.
The dollar index - which measures the greenback
against six other major currencies - hit a six-month low, while
prices of safe-haven gold rose.
However, strong earnings including those of Dow component
Home Depot, could lead markets higher. The No. 1 U.S.
home improvement chain reported a higher-than-expected quarterly
profit, sending its shares up 2.1 percent $160.68.
While earnings continue to support the indexes, global
geopolitical tensions and domestic political developments could
unsettle the market's record-setting spree.
"New accusations against Trump on intelligent secrets if
expanded will be the catalyst to ignite a perfect storm (in the
market)," Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First
standard Financial, wrote in a note.
At 9:34 a.m. ET (1334 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial Average
was up 38.13 points, or 0.18 percent, at 21,020.07, the
S&P 500 was up 2.25 points, or 0.09 percent, at 2,404.57
and the Nasdaq Composite was up 8.35 points, or 0.14
percent, at 6,158.02.
Eight of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors were higher.
Healthcare, real estate and consumer
discretionary were slightly lower.
Wall Street closed higher on Monday with gains in
technology, energy and financial stocks powering the S&P and the
Nasdaq to close at record levels.
Oil prices edged up about 0.7 percent on Tuesday, prompted
by the dollar's decline and the expectation for a supply limit
deal to extend into next year.
Pfizer was off 1.6 percent at $32.56 after Citigroup
downgraded the drug developer's stock to "sell" from "neutral".
Akebia Therapeutics was up nearly 17 percent at
$15.05 after the drug developer entered into an agreement with
Vifor Pharma Group, which also made a $50 million equity
investment in the company.
Dick's Sporting Goods tumbled 12 percent after the
company reported lower-than-expected quarterly sales.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 1,583
to 889. On the Nasdaq, 1,254 issues rose and 850 fell.
The S&P 500 index showed 35 new 52-week highs and seven new
lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 57 new highs and 16 new lows.
(Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by