Wall Street's Top Stories For Monday, September 9, 2019

Stocks mixed as AGs announce Google probe.

Stocks had a mostly quiet trading day and finished mixed, with the Dow notching a narrow gain and the Nasdaq slipping. The tech heavy index may have been pressured by the continuing regulatory headwinds faced by the biggest names in the space, including Google, which is facing a new probe from the attorneys general of nearly every state in the country.

ECONOMIC EVENTS: In the U.S., consumer credit surged $23.3B in July, stronger than forecast, after increasing $13.8B in June and $16.8B in May.

In China, the trade surplus for August was nearly 20% smaller than expected as imports contracted less than expected and exports increased less than expected. The report may suggest domestic demand is holding up better than expected while international demand for Chinese goods was weaker than anticipated.

TOP NEWS: Shares of Alphabet (GOOG, GOOGL) were in focus after a group of 50 state attorneys general, led by Texas AG Ken Paxton, announced that they are joining up to launch an investigation into Google to examine whether the search giant has stifled competitors in a manner that's harmful to users. In an official announcement on the matter, Paxton said that the probe is not a lawsuit, but rather an "investigation to determine the facts." The group of AGs is comprised of attorneys general from 48 states, as well as AGs representing the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, but is notably missing attorneys general from Alabama and California, according to Business Insider's Nick Bastone.

Shares of AT&T (T) rose 1.5% after Elliott Management disclosed that it has built a $3.2B stake in the stock and sent a letter to the company's board outlining what it sees as a "compelling value-creation opportunity" that could lead AT&T to a $60+ per share value by the end of 2021. In response, AT&T said it will review Elliott Management's perspectives, adding that "many of the actions outlined are ones we are already executing today." Meanwhile, CNBC's Alex Sherman reported that Elliott would prefer that CEO Randall Stephenson step down from his position and does not think newly promoted COO John Stankey should replace Stephenson as CEO. In addition, the New York Post's Josh Kosman reported that AT&T has hired Goldman Sachs (GS) to defend itself against Elliott.

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