U.S. Stocks Add to 8-Week Highs as Banks, Energy Continue Rally

U.S. stocks advanced, extending their eight-week highs with banks and energy shares rallying for a second day as improving data bolstered optimism on the economy.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index rose 0.4 percent to 1,986.36 at 4 p.m. in New York, holding at the highest since Jan. 6. The gauge surged 2.4 percent yesterday, the most in more than a month. The Russell 2000 Index jumped 1.1 percent.

A report today showed companies in the U.S. added more workers than forecast to their payrolls, another positive signal on the economy after gauges showing stability at American factories, major carmakers and in the public and private construction industries helped spur a rally yesterday. The improving data has also raised the odds the Federal Reserve will boost borrowing costs this year.

The S&P 500 has trimmed its 2016 decline to less than 3 percent, from more than 10 percent, amid a recovery from a 22-month low on Feb. 11. The benchmark is down 6.8 percent from an all-time high reached last May.

In Tuesday’s votes, Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton solidified their positions in the race to their parties’ presidential nominations. The impact on trading was muddied as global equities rebounded on the U.S. economic data and amid stability in China markets that spurred risk-taking.

Source: Bloomberg

MARKET

U.S. Stocks Rally as Hardest-Hit Shares in 2016 Continue Rebound

U.S. stocks rallied, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average rising more than 250 points, as the year’s most-battered shares continued to recover and energy shares climbed with oil prices.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index rose 1.6 percent to 1,926.70 at 4 p.m. in New York, capping its first three-day advance this year and closing at a two-week high. West Texas Intermediate crude futures surged, briefly topped $ 31 a barrel.

Equity gains are coming virtually as fast as the losses that sent the S&P 500 to its worst start to any year, with almost half of 2016’s decline made up in three days. The rally today occurred as oil climbed more than 5 percent, Federal Reserve officials expressed caution on the economy and data on manufacturing was better than forecast.

This year’s most beaten-down industries have bolstered the gains since the main U.S. equity index closed at a 22-month low last Thursday, amid a sense that the selling was overdone. Banks in the benchmark are up 9.7 percent in the last three sessions, recovering from the lowest level since 2013, while retailers have surged 7.3 percent, rebounding from a 16 percent drop to begin 2016.

Source: Bloomberg

MARKET