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With Q2 earnings season in the rearview mirror and Q3 a few weeks away, investors are in search of catalysts to move the index significantly in one direction or another.

The release of, for the most part expected, CPI data for August was just enough for the bulls to eke out a modest gain of 3.75 handles at the closing price of 4517.50.

While the kingpin of mega cap tech faltered (Apple Inc), all the others picked up the slack and buoyed the index. While the initial reaction to the inflation report was negative, there were willing buyers on the retreat that persisted during the regular session.

The bears were clinging to a victory until the final thirty minutes of the session as the index caught a bid above the intraday low and rallied into the close.

From a five-day perspective, the index is stuck in nearly a 60-handle, narrow trading range (4483.25-4543.50), with a majority of the trading action in the 4515-4525 zone.

Among the top components, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) was by far the biggest winner. Its announcement of the usage of AI for sellers on the platform was the catalyst for the rally. For the session, the issue advanced by $3.65 or 2.6 at the closing price of $144.85. That takes the issue back to levels not seen since August 2022.

This performance was well over the cash index’s gain of 0.12%.

Conversely, the index’s biggest component, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) was the biggest loser. The lingering effect of China’s iPhone bans is still weighing on the issue. That, coupled with no big surprises at its product announcement instigated a decline of $2.09 or 1.9%. That extends its losing streak to three sessions. Over the past six sessions, the issue has shed $15.49 or 8.2%.


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