Tech powers S&P 500 to record closing high, Dow now positive for the year

By Stephen Culp NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wall Street advanced on Friday, with technology stocks driving the S&P 500 to its sixth record closing high since confirming a bull market on Aug.

Reuters August 29, 2020 02:05:56 IST
Tech powers S&P 500 to record closing high, Dow now positive for the year

Tech powers SP 500 to record closing high Dow now positive for the year

By Stephen Culp

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Wall Street advanced on Friday, with technology stocks driving the S&P 500 to its sixth record closing high since confirming a bull market on Aug. 18.

The Nasdaq also set an all-time closing high and the blue-chip Dow is now in positive territory year-to-date.

The S&P 500 is close to wrapping up what appears to be its best August in 34 years.

All three major U.S. stock indexes ended the week higher than last Friday's close, marking the fifth consecutive weekly gains for the S&P and the Nasdaq.

"Tech stocks have driven much of the recovery this year, but we are seeing breadth expand, which is helping indices like the Dow Jones Industrial Average," said David Carter, chief investment officer at Lenox Wealth Advisors in New York.

Stocks extended their gains after a top aide to President Donald Trump said the president is willing to sign a $1.3 trillion coronavirus relief bill, four weeks after emergency unemployment benefits expired for millions of Americans.

Economic data released before the bell showed American consumers, who account for about 70% of the U.S. economy, increased their spending more than expected in July but the savings rate, a barometer of consumer uncertainty, remained elevated well above pre-pandemic levels.

The personal consumption expenditures (PCE) core index, which excludes food and energy, rose at a rate of 1.3% year-on-year. On Thursday, U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell unveiled a new monetary strategy adopting an average annual inflation target of 2%, implying the central bank could keep key interest rates near zero even if inflation rises above its target.

"(The Fed's) new-found acceptance of higher inflation suggests the recovery could continue for much longer, as will near-zero rates," Carter added.

Unofficially, the Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> rose 160.77 points, or 0.56%, to 28,653.04, the S&P 500 <.SPX> gained 23.3 points, or 0.67%, to 3,507.85 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> added 70.30 points, or 0.6%, to 11,695.63. Energy stocks <.SPNY> ended the session with largest percentage gain among the major S&P sectors after Hurricane Laura passed through the Gulf region without causing widespread damage and oil rigs and refineries began to restart operations.

United Airlines and Coca-Cola Co rose as they prepared for cost-cutting efforts including furloughs and voluntary separations.

But tech companies continue to benefit from companies shifting to a work-from-home model.

Business software company Workday Inc jumped after raising its annual subscription forecast and Dell Technologies Inc rose following its quarterly profit beat.

Walmart Inc announced it was joining Microsoft Corp in its bid for TikTok's U.S. assets from Chinese owner ByteDance.

Nutanix Inc soared after the cloud service provider beat earnings expectations and Bain Capital invested about $750 million in the company.

(Reporting by Stephen Culp; Editing by Tom Brown)

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

Updated Date:

TAGS:

also read

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources
| Reuters
World

France, Germany to agree to NATO role against Islamic State - sources | Reuters

By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States

China's Xi says navy should become world class
| Reuters
World

China's Xi says navy should become world class | Reuters

BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.