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Stock Market News For Dec 28, 2018

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Markets closed sharply higher on Thursday after erasing huge losses with the Dow ending more than 800 points higher from its session low. The recovery saw the Dow ending the day up more than 250 points. All three major indexes ended in positive territory. Thursday’s gains come a day after all three major indexes posted their biggest percentage increases in almost a decade.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) advanced 1.1% to close at 23,138.82. The S&P 500 climbed 0.9% to close at 2,488.83. The Nasdaq Composite Index closed at 6,579.49, increasing 0.4%. A total of about 9 billion shares were traded on Thursday, lower than the last 20-session average of 9.2 billion shares. Advancers outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by a 1.20-to-1 ratio. On Nasdaq, a 1.03-to-1 ratio favored advancing issues.

How did the Benchmarks Perform?

The Dow ended the day up 260.37 points, after losing as much as 611 points at its session low. The Dow’s rebound from a 2.67% at its session low to end in positive territory is also its biggest intra-day swing on percentage basis since Oct 4, 2011, when the index had bounced back from a fall of 2.75% at its session low.

The S&P 500 gained 21.13 points after erasing a decline of 2.8% at its session low. Thursday’s rebound was also the biggest intra-day swing for the S&P 500 since 25, 2010. Materials and industrials were the biggest gainers. The Materials Select Sector SPDR (XLB) and the Industrial Select Sector SPDR (XLI) rallied 1.8% and 1.3%, respectively. The Technology Select Sector SPDR (XLK) gained 0.7%. All the 11 major S&P 500 sectors ended in positive territory.

The Nasdaq also erased sharp losses to end the day up 25.14 points. The tech-heavy index made a turnaround from a decline of 3.3% at its session low, it biggest intra-day swing since Nov 18, 2018. Shares of Netflix, Inc. (NFLX - Free Report) and Facebook Inc. (FB - Free Report) gained 0.8% and 0.3%, respectively. Netflix has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

Late Session Rebound Help Markets

Thursday’s session was volatile as all three indexes bounced back from their session lows to end higher. In fact, this week has been volatile. Markets closed sharply lower on Monday, recording their sharpest losses in history on the eve of Christmas in a holiday-shortened session.However, stocks staged a major comeback on the day after Christmas, with all three major indexes posting their biggest percentage gains in nearly a decade.

On Thursday, stocks initially failed to hold on to the gains made in the previous session amid renewed tensions between the United States and China on reports that President Donald Trump is considering to issue an executive order in the New Year that would ban U.S. companies to use telecommunications equipment made by Chinese companies ZTE and Huawei.

However, the initial losses were finally erased in the last hour of trading. That said, all three major indexes are still down more than 9% on a month-to-date basis, with the S&P 500 on track for its biggest ever annual percentage decline since 2008.   

Initial Claims, Consumer Confidence Fall 

The Labor Department said that initial jobless claims fell by 1,000 to 216,000 in the week ended Dec 22. On the other hand, the Conference Board said that consumer confidence fell to 128.1 this month from a revised 136.4 in November.

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