Wall Street gets PayPal lift as Nasdaq wipes out 2020 declines
By Lewis Krauskopf (Reuters) - Wall Street's indexes climbed on Thursday, with the Nasdaq erasing losses for 2020, following a clutch of upbeat earnings reports led by PayPal as investors looked past more weak jobs data caused by the coronavirus-induced economic downturn.
By Lewis Krauskopf
(Reuters) - Wall Street's indexes climbed on Thursday, with the Nasdaq erasing losses for 2020, following a clutch of upbeat earnings reports led by PayPal as investors looked past more weak jobs data caused by the coronavirus-induced economic downturn.
Energy <.SPNY>, materials <.SPLRCM> and financials <.SPSY>, which have lagged this year, led the way among S&P 500 sectors, while consumer staples <.SPLRCS> lagged the most.
Shares of PayPal Holdings
Shares of media company ViacomCBS Inc
Stocks have rebounded sharply since late March from the coronavirus-fueled sell-off, helped by massive monetary and fiscal stimulus. Investors are now watching efforts by a number of states to spark their economies by easing restrictions put in place to fight the outbreak.
“Everything is going smoothly so far and I think there’s an assumption on the market’s part that that’s a good sign," said Brad McMillan, chief investment officer for Commonwealth Financial Network. "The market is looking at this and saying so far, so good.”
The Dow Jones Industrial Average <.DJI> rose 211.25 points, or 0.89%, to 23,875.89, the S&P 500 <.SPX> gained 32.77 points, or 1.15%, to 2,881.19 and the Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> added 125.27 points, or 1.41%, to 8,979.66.
The Nasdaq turned marginally positive for 2020 by closing above 8972.604, after being down well over 20% for the year as of late March. The S&P 500 remains down over 10% this year.
Data showed millions more Americans sought unemployment benefits last week, suggesting layoffs broadened from consumer-facing industries to other segments of the economy and could remain elevated even as many parts of the country start to reopen.
The U.S. employment report for April is due on Friday.
“The market rightly or wrongly is just much more focused on what that data looks like two months from now, not what that data looks like right now,” said Eric Freedman, chief investment officer at U.S. Bank Wealth Management.
Investors were also encouraged by news that China's exports unexpectedly rose in April for the first time this year as factories raced to make up for lost sales due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The development of treatments for the coronavirus has been watched closely by Wall Street as key for resuming economic activity. Moderna Inc
Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 2.96-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 2.33-to-1 ratio favored advancers.
The S&P 500 posted nine new 52-week highs and no new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 56 new highs and 8 new lows.
About 10.4 billion shares changed hands in U.S. exchanges, below the 11.7 billion daily average over the last 20 sessions.
(Additional reporting by Noel Randewich in San Francisco, Chuck Mikolajczak in New York, C Nivedita and Medha Singh in Bengaluru; Editing by Sagarika Jaisinghani, Bernard Orr, Arun Koyyur and Cynthia Osterman)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
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
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