- The S&P is ending down -2.96 points or -0.12%
- The Nasdaq is ending down -10.112 points or -0.16%
- The Dow is ending down -22.12 points or -0.10%
- 2 year 1.302%, up 1.4 bp
- 5 year 1.7385%, up 1.9 bp
- 10 year 2.1782%, up 1.9 bp
- 30 year 2.8373%, up 2.7 bp
Stocks jumped to new record highs and the Dow shot past 20,600 on Wednesday after more reports showed the U.S. economy continues to strengthen.
The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 107 points, up 0.5% to a new closing high of 20,611.86.
Also building upon their record highs set in the previous session were the S&P 500 and Nasdaq composite, up 0.5% to 2349.25 and 0.6% to 5819.44, respectively.
The encouraging data could push the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates more aggressively from the record lows marked during the Great Recession.
Wednesday’s economic reports give the Federal Reserve more encouragement to raise interest rates, and economists said the possibility is increasing that it may happen at the central bank’s next meeting in March. Retailers had stronger sales in January than economists expected, and inflation at the consumer level was the highest in years. Consumer prices rose 2.5% in January from a year earlier, the highest rate since March 2012.
Fed Chair Janet Yellen said in testimony before a Congressional committee that the strengthening job market and a modest move higher in inflation should warrant continued, gradual increases in interest rates, echoing her comments from a day earlier. The central bank raised rates in December for just the second time in a decade, after keeping rates at nearly zero to help lift the economy out of the Great Recession.
Stocks shook of earlier losses and ended higher Tuesday, led by a rise in bank stocks as major indexes pushed further into record territory.
The Dow Jones industrial average gained 92 points, or 0.5%, to an all-time closing high well above that landmark 20,000 level — and a little over halfway to the next 1,000-point rung, at 20,504.41.
Meanwhile the Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 0.4% and the Nasdaq composite index gained 0.3%. Both indexes also set new all-time closing highs. All three indexes’ previous closing highs came in Monday’s session.
Bond yields rose after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen said the central bank is still on track to raise interest rates gradually.
Yellen answered questions before a Senate committee, and she said that the strengthening job market and a modest move higher in inflation should warrant continued, gradual increases in interest rates.
Bond yields moved higher immediately following Yellen’s comments. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.47% from 2.43% late Monday.
Banks and other financial companies led stocks higher on Wall Street Friday as President Trump prepares to scale back financial industry regulations. Buyers were also encouraged by a pickup in hiring in January. Small-company stocks, which stand to benefit more than others from stronger economic growth, make sharp gains.
The Dow Jones industrial average jumped back above the 20,000 level as the blue-chip index rose 186.55 points, or 0.9%, to close at 20,071.46. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index gained 16.57, or 0.7%, to 2297.43, moving within one point of its record closing high of 2298.37. The Nasdaq composite index added 30.57, or 0.5%, to set a new record closing high of 5666.77.
The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks climbed 1.5% to 1,377.84. Smaller, domestically-focused companies may have more to gain than their larger peers from faster growth in the U.S. The Russell made large gains at the end of 2016 based on those hopes.
The stock market rally kicked off early after the government reported that U.S. employers added 227,000 jobs in January, higher than last year’s average monthly gain of 187,000 and a sign that President Donald Trump has inherited a robust job market. The unemployment rate ticked up to a low 4.8% from 4.7% in December, but for a good reason: More people started looking for work. The percentage of adults working or looking for jobs increased to its highest level since September.
Financial firms rose after President Donald Trump took his first steps aimed at scaling back regulations on the industry. He signed an order that directs the Treasury Secretary to look for potential changes to the Dodd-Frank law, which reshaped financial regulations after the 2008-09 financial crisis and created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
The order doesn’t have any immediate impact, but suggests Trump is intent on reducing regulations, which could boost profits for financial companies and banks.
Dow components Visa (V) and Goldman Sachs (GS) jumped 4.6%, JPMorgan Chase (JPM) added 3.1% and American Express (AXP) gained 2%. Smaller banks, which could find it easier to lend money if regulations are cut, also traded higher.
U.S. stocks fell Tuesday as the market fallout of Trump’s travel ban on seven Muslim-majority countries continues to take a toll and investors digest weak fourth-quarter results from companies including UPS and Under Armour.
Industrial companies are down the most, but health care companies offset some of the losses. As they look for less risky investments, buyers are moving money into bonds and stocks that pay large dividends, like utilities.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell for a fourth straight day, its longest losing streak since before the presidential election in November. But the losses have been fairly small, and for the second day in a row, stocks recovered some of their losses late in the day.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 index fell 2.03 points, or 0.1%, to 2278.87. The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 107.04 points, or 0.5%, to 19,864.09. The Nasdaq composite index was able to cut its losses and closed up 1.07 to 5614.79.
Bond prices rose as investors snapped up bonds. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.45% from 2.49%. That hurt financial stocks, as lower bond yields reduce interest rates and the profits those companies make from lending.
Investors who want income also bought stocks that pay outsize dividends, including real estate investment trusts and utility companies. Gains for those stocks limited the market’s losses overall.
In earnings news:
Stock indexes wavered between small gains and losses before ending mixed Thursday as investors sized up the latest company earnings news. Consumer goods and industrial stocks climbed the most, while health care and utilities were among the biggest laggards.
The Dow Jones industrial average climbed further above the 20,000 level it passed Wednesday. gaining 32 points, or 0.2% to 20,100.91.
Wall Street came off solid gains from the day before. The Dow Jones industrial average, after topping the magic 20K milestone and staying there, hit a record closing high along with the Nasdaq composite and the S&P 500.
On Thursday the Nasdaq slipped fractionally, losing just 0.02% to 5655.18. Off a little less than 0.1% was the S&P 500, now at 2296.68.
It’s been a record-making week on Wall Street. The S&P 500 index and Nasdaq composite closed at all-time highs on Tuesday and Wednesday. The Dow, which tracks 30 major industrial companies, added its own milestone Wednesday after it breached the 20,000 mark for the first time.
The market is getting a general boost from strong company earnings and investor optimism that the Trump administration’s policies on taxes, regulation and trade will be good for business.
Oil prices jumped as benchmark U.S. crude oil was up $1.07, or 2%, at $53.82 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, was up $1.08, or 1.9%, at $56.50 a barrel in London.
U.S. stocks fell Monday as investors pored over the latest crop of company earnings and deal news. Energy companies were down the most as crude oil prices headed lower. Real estate stocks led the gainers. Traders also had their eye on the White House as President Donald Trump reaffirmed plans to slash regulations on businesses and tax foreign goods entering the country.
The Dow Jones industrial average dropped 27.40 points, or 0.1%, to close at 19,799.85. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index slid 6.11, or 0.3%, to 2265.20 and the Nasdaq composite index dipped 2.39, or less than 0.1%, to 5552.94.
At a White House meeting early Monday with business leaders, Trump repeated a campaign promise to cut regulations by at least 75%. He also said there would be advantages to companies that make their products in the U.S., suggesting he will impose a “substantial border tax” on foreign goods entering the country.
Energy stocks took a hit as oil prices fell. Benchmark U.S. crude was down 0.9% to $52.75 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, was down 0.4% at $55.28 per barrel in London.
The 10-year Treasury yield dropped to 2.40% from 2.47% late Friday.
In company news: