Benchmarks closed in the green on Thursday as stocks rallied banking on 2019’s blockbuster performance and especially due to optimism on US-China trade front.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) rose 330.36 points or 1.2%, to close at 28,868.80 and the S&P 500 gained 27.07 points or 0.8% to close at of 3,257.85. While, the Nasdaq Composite Index closed at 9,092.20, gaining 119.59 points or 1.3%. The fear-gauge CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) increased 26.6% to close at 15.79. Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones, a 1.18-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and a 1.12-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq favored advancers.
How Did the Benchmarks Perform?
Wall Street rallied higher hitting fresh all-time highs on the first trading day of the year. Out of the 11 major sectors of the S&P 500, tech stocks were the best performers as the Technology Select Sector SPDR added 1.6%. Closely followed by the industrial sector, evidently as the Industrial Select Sector SPDR rose 1.9%
Among the S&P 500’s tech stocks, chipmakers soared highest, Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. (AMD - Free Report) added 7.1% on Thursday. The Dow got boosted with Apple Inc. (AAPL - Free Report) rise of 2.3%. Apple carries a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.
Overall, the S&P 500 posted 46 new 52-week highs with one new low and the Nasdaq Composite recorded 97 new highs and 10 new lows.
Stocks Rise on U.S-China Trade Optimism
The Phase 1 U.S.-China trade deal between the United States and China would be signed on Jan 15 at the White House. This had helped the recent rally in stocks as investors continue to track trade developments, and optimism rise on easing of the protracted trade war. Post the signing of the Phase 1 deal, President Trump will be travelling to China for phase two talks.
On Thursday, the government reported that initial jobless claims slipped by 2,000 to 222,000 for the seven days ending on Dec 28. This indicates that the pace of layoffs in American firms remain near a 50-year low. In fact the new claims at the end of the year resulted from temporary job additions tied to the holiday season.
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