Follow Us on Google News
The US stock market ended Thursday on a high note, with all three major indexes posting gains of over 1%. The tech-heavy Nasdaq surged nearly 2%, thanks to interest rate sensitive megacaps such as Apple, Microsoft, and Amazon. This surge in the market was driven by economic data that showed cooling inflation and a loosening labor market, which fueled optimism that the Federal Reserve may be nearing the end of its aggressive interest rate hike cycle.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose by 383.19 points or 1.14% to 34,029.69. The S&P 500 gained 54.27 points or 1.33% at 4,146.22. The Nasdaq Composite added 236.94 points or 1.99% at 12,166.27. This is the biggest one-day percentage jump in a month for the Nasdaq.
Data released before the bell showed that producer prices have cooled down more than expected and new claims for jobless benefits are above consensus. These factors signal that the Fed’s hawkish barrage of rate hikes, which began over a year ago, is working as intended.
This comes on the heels of Wednesday’s muted Consumer Price Index report, which cemented the likelihood of yet another 25 basis point rate hike at the conclusion of next month’s Federal Open Market Committee policy meeting.
According to Refinitiv, analysts expect aggregate first-quarter S&P 500 earnings to come in 5.2% below the year-ago quarter. This is a stark reversal from the 1.4% year-on-year growth seen at the beginning of the quarter.
Among the 11 major sectors of the S&P 500, all but real estate ended the session higher, with communication services and consumer discretionary enjoying the largest gains, both jumping 2.3%.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by a 2.71-to-1 ratio, and on Nasdaq, a 2.55-to-1 ratio favored advancers.
The S&P 500 posted 12 new 52-week highs and one new low. The Nasdaq Composite recorded 69 new highs and 140 new lows.
Volume on US exchanges was 10.40 billion shares, compared with the 11.51 billion average over the last 20 trading days.