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Wall St trims gains while Greece deal hopes fade

US stocks shed some of their gains yesterday after eurozone finance ministers put off further bailout talks until after Sunday’s referendum in Greece.

Stronger-than-expected jobs and construction data supported the market, as did a $28 billion offer from Swiss insurance giant ACE to buy upmarket property insurer Chubb.

Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras urged voters to reject bailout terms in the referendum, a day after the country became the first advanced nation to default on an IMF loan repayment.

“There were hopes of a deal earlier in the morning and the hopes are literally taken off the table,” said Adam Sarhan, chief executive of Sarhan Capital in New York.

US private employers added 237,000 jobs in June, the biggest gain since December, while construction spending rose in May to its highest level in just over 6-1/2 years.

The US Federal Reserve has said it will raise rates only if it sees a sustained recovery in the economy.

“As long as the Fed raises rates because there is economic expansion and not because of inflation, it is a positive for equities because that means corporations can continue to grow earnings,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Rockwell Global Capital in New York. Car­dillo, however, said investors re­mained cautious ahead of monthly employment data on Thursday.

At 17:40 GMT the Dow Jones industrial average was up 94 points, or 0.53 per cent, at 17,713.51, the S&P 500 was up 9.66 points, or 0.47 per cent, at 2,072.77 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 17.38 points, or 0.35 per cent, at 5,004.24.

Nine of the 10 major S&P 500 sectors rose, barring the energy sector which was hit by a slide in oil prices.

Chubb's shares jumped 29 per cent to $122.72. Rival Travelers rose 2.4 per cent, providing the biggest boost to the Dow. ACE was up 1.9 per cent.

Casino stocks jumped for a second straight day, following better-than-expected monthly gaming revenue in Macau. Melco Crown rose 4.5 per cent, Wynn Resorts 5.2 per cent and Las Vegas Sands 2.9 per cent.

Teladoc Inc made a big splash in its debut on the New York Stock Exchange with shares of the on-demand medical consultation provider rising 67 per cent to $31.65.

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 1,846 to 1,166, for a 1.58-to-1 ratio on the upside.

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