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The Dow Transports index ended a five day losing streak — its longest since last April — on Friday, as shares of FedEx, UPS, and Kirby gained renewed momentum.

The index’s gains, which coincided with a rise by the blue chip Dow Jones Industrial Average, is closely watched by Dow theorists. Earlier this month, both indices closed at record levels, which is viewed by some investors as a sign of good news to come. The transports are also closely scrutinised as a barometer of broader US economic growth.

Shares of Kirby, which operates tank barges, climbed 6 per cent to $68.50, Ryder System gained 2 per cent to $73.54, FedEx rose 2 per cent to $188.54 and UPS advanced 2 per cent to $106.97.

Despite the enthusiasm for shipping groups, the same investor appetites did not extend to airline stocks on Friday. The NYSE Arca airline index was barely positive for the day and has lagged of late after climbing to a 15-year year higher earlier this year.

The stocks have come under pressure as fuel and labour costs have risen, alongside concern a travel ban implemented by the Trump administration could curtail demand from some international markets.

Shares of SkyWest dropped 5 per cent to $35.05 while Allegiant Travel and Alaska Air Group were down less than 1 per cent to $162.20 and $94.25, respectively. An advance of less than 1 per cent by Delta, United and American offset those declines.

Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2019. All rights reserved.

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