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The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq notched 1% for the first time in about three months as tensions between U.S and North Korea cooled down for the moment. The Dow also closed in the green because of a rally in the shares of Goldman Sachs, Apple, Visa and Tesla.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) closed at 21,993.71, advancing 0.6% or 135.39 points. The S&P 500 Index (INX) increased 1%, or 24.52 points to close at 2,465.84. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Composite Index (IXIC) closed at 6,340.23, increasing 83.68 points or 1.3%. A total of around 5.5 billion shares were traded on Monday, below the last 20-session average of 6.3 billion shares. Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 3.22-to-1 ratio.

Geopolitical Tensions Wane, Markets Rebound

Markets closed higher on Monday as the geopolitical tensions between Pyongyang and Washington attenuated. The U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and Secretary of Defense James Mattis, have together stated that the Trump Administration would like to have a diplomatic path to resolve issues with North Korea. They went on record to state that “the U.S. has no interest in regime change or accelerated reunification of Korea.”

The Dow increased to end in the green, buoyed by a 1.8% rise in the shares of Visa Inc. (V - Free Report) due to broadly encouraging economic conditions. Also, contributing to the gains were rise in shares of Goldman Sachs (GS - Free Report) , Apple (AAPL - Free Report) and Boeing (BA - Free Report) . The S&P 500 gained more than 1% for the first time in three months. Ten of the eleven sectors of the S&P 500 finished higher, led by rise in technology and real estate. The Select Sector SPDR for Technology (XLK) and Real Estate (XLRE) were up 1.6% and 1.7%, respectively. The tech shares contributed to most gains as the shares of Apple surged 1.5%. The Nasdaq overshadowed the two other indexes once again, riding high on increase in shares of Tesla (T), Amazon (AMZN - Free Report) and Facebook (FB - Free Report) .

Market Volatility Falls as Investors Become Positive

The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) dropped 20% on Monday, days after hitting the nine-month high. This was made possible by upbeat investor sentiment as the U.S. downplayed any risk of a war with North Korea.

The gauge of fear in the market, VIX, traded around 12.4% on Monday after posting highest weekly increase last week since December 2015. By all accounts, this has been the quietest stretch of trading since 1965. One estimate puts the current level of volatility at the lowest in 52 years.  To put things in perspective, the market’s so called “fear gauge”, the VIX, continues to linger near its lowest point in 23 years and more.

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