Nasdaq tops 9,000 on Amazon; U.S.-China trade optimism drives record rally

By Lewis Krauskopf (Reuters) - The Nasdaq topped the 9,000-point mark for the first time on Thursday and the S&P 500 hit a record high, boosted by optimism over U.S.-China trade relations and gains in shares of Amazon.com after a report signalled robust online holiday sales. Traders returned from the Christmas break to digest comments from Beijing that it was in close contact with Washington about an initial trade agreement, shortly after U.S. President Donald Trump talked up a signing ceremony for the recently struck Phase 1 trade deal

Reuters December 27, 2019 01:07:57 IST
Nasdaq tops 9,000 on Amazon; U.S.-China trade optimism drives record rally

Nasdaq tops 9000 on Amazon USChina trade optimism drives record rally

By Lewis Krauskopf

(Reuters) - The Nasdaq topped the 9,000-point mark for the first time on Thursday and the S&P 500 hit a record high, boosted by optimism over U.S.-China trade relations and gains in shares of Amazon.com after a report signalled robust online holiday sales.

Traders returned from the Christmas break to digest comments from Beijing that it was in close contact with Washington about an initial trade agreement, shortly after U.S. President Donald Trump talked up a signing ceremony for the recently struck Phase 1 trade deal.

Cooling U.S.-China trade tensions have fuelled the latest leg of Wall Street's record-setting rally. With just days to go until the yearend, the benchmark S&P 500 is up 29% so far this year, which would be its biggest annual percentage gain since 2013.

“The path of least resistance is up right now," said Carol Schleif, deputy chief investment officer of Abbot Downing in Minneapolis. "You have had a lot more clarity on certain things that had worried the market all year."

Shares of Amazon jumped 4.1% after a Mastercard report showed that U.S. shoppers spent more online during the holiday shopping season than in 2018, with e-commerce sales hitting a record high.

"The important part is that the online sales were much stronger than expected. The brick-and-mortar were less than expected, so the online sales, and principally Amazon, saved the day," said John Conlon, director, equity strategy at People's United Advisors.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> rose 54.97 points, or 0.19%, to 28,570.42, the S&P 500 <.SPX> gained 11.06 points, or 0.34%, to 3,234.44 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> added 57.12 points, or 0.64%, to 9,010.01.

Consumer discretionary <.SPLRCD> was the biggest gainer among the S&P 500 sectors, spurred by Amazon. Healthcare <.SPXHC> lagged the most.

The Federal Reserve's interest rate cuts, economic data that has come in above low expectations, and corporate profits have helped lift stocks this year along with trade-relations optimism.

A Labor Department report on Thursday showed the number of Americans filing applications for unemployment benefits fell last week in a sign of ongoing labour market strength.

Trading volumes are expected to remain thin during the holiday-shortened week.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 1.66-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.20-to-1 ratio favoured advancers.

The S&P 500 posted 27 new 52-week highs and no new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 110 new highs and 19 new lows.

(Reporting by Lewis Krauskopf in New York; Additional reporting by Manas Mishra in Bengaluru; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta and Leslie Adler)

This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.

Updated Date:

TAGS:

Find latest and upcoming tech gadgets online on Tech2 Gadgets. Get technology news, gadgets reviews & ratings. Popular gadgets including laptop, tablet and mobile specifications, features, prices, comparison.

also read

Snow-struck Madrid struggles with cleanup as severe frost grips Spain
World

Snow-struck Madrid struggles with cleanup as severe frost grips Spain

By Elena Rodriguez and Belén Carreño MADRID (Reuters) - Authorities struggled to clear ice and fallen trees from the streets of Madrid on Tuesday and temperatures in parts of Spain hit record lows after a snowstorm wrought havoc across the country at the weekend. Early jubilation at the historic snowfall, which saw skiers gliding through the streets and mass snowball fights, gave way to frustration as most public transport remained stalled and pedestrians avoided the icy streets. "You in Madrid are not ready for this," said Demetrio, a Ukrainian living in Madrid, who did not give his last name.

Trump disavows any responsibility for his supporters' Jan. 6 attack
World

Trump disavows any responsibility for his supporters' Jan. 6 attack

By Steve Holland and Andrea Shalal JOINT BASE ANDREWS, Md./WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump, facing impeachment on a charge of "incitement of insurrection" on Tuesday disavowed responsibility for his supporters' violent invasion of the U.S. Capitol last week and said his remarks before the siege were appropriate.

Renault and Plug Power to develop fuel-cell commerical vehicles
News &amp; Analysis

Renault and Plug Power to develop fuel-cell commerical vehicles

PARIS (Reuters) - French carmaker Renault and U.S. hydrogen specialist Plug Power have joined forces to develop hydrogen-powered light commercial vehicles, they said on Tuesday. The companies have signed a memorandum of understanding to launch a France-based 50-50 joint venture by the end of the first half of 2021, targeting more than 30% share of the fuel cell-powered light commercial vehicle market in Europe, their joint statement said