Wall Street stocks continue to hit record highs as retail sales, job data boost confidence

April 16, 2021 - 1 month ago
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Wall Street stocks moved sharply higher during the trading on Thursday, with the Dow and the S&P 500 reaching new record closing highs, while the Nasdaq ended the day at its best closing level in two months.

The blue-chip Dow and S&P 500 index closed at records on Thursday after key companies in the U.S. reported strong earnings and new economic data, which points to a rebound in consumer spending and the U.S. jobs market.

Assurances from the Federal Reserve to maintain an accommodative monetary policy despite higher inflation, as well as more fiscal stimulus, have since revived U.S. stock markets and put the Nasdaq about +1.2% below its all-time high.

At the finishing bell, on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE), the blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial rose +305.10 points, or +0.90%, to a record close of 34,035.99, setting a new closing record and an intraday all-time high earlier in the session.

The broad-based Standard & Poor’s 500 Index gained +45.76% points, or +1.1%, to 4,170.42, also reaching a record high.

Meanwhile, the rich-tech Nasdaq Composite Index advanced +180.92 points, or +1.3% to 14,038.76.

Technology shares rebounded as bond yields declined, while the so-called FAANG stocks – Facebook, Amazon, Apple, Netflix and Alphabet – all climbed more than +1%.

The benchmark 10-year Treasury yield slipped below 1.6% for the first time since March 25.

Top U.S. banks kicked off the first-quarter reporting season on Wednesday, with Goldman Sachs Group Inc, JPMorgan Chase & Co and Wells Fargo & Co posting bumper results.

Meanwhile, US retail sales surged 9.8% in March as additional stimulus sent consumer spending soaring, the Commerce Department reported on Thursday, crashing through the 5.8% forecast.

Adding to the market’s optimism, weekly U.S. jobless benefits claims fell to the lowest level since March 2020.
The U.S. unemployment claims sank by 193,000 in the week of April 10.

Initial jobless claims filed traditionally through the states declined to a seasonally adjusted 576,000 from 769,000 in the prior week.

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase added +2% a day after going public in a high-profile debut on the Nasdaq that briefly valued it at more than $100 billion.

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