Wall Street rises as the Fed signals a slowdown in rate hikes

  • Growth stocks rebound as Treasury yields fall
  • Tesla jumps as Citigroup upgrades
  • Nordstrom falls on low profit forecast
  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at its highest level since April
  • Dow rose 0.28%, S&P 500 rose 0.59%, Nasdaq rose 0.99%

Nov 23 (Reuters) – Wall Street’s main indexes ended with solid gains on Wednesday after minutes from the Federal Reserve’s November meeting showed that interest rate hikes may soon slow.

A “substantial majority” of policymakers agreed that it would “probably be appropriate soon” to slow the pace of interest rate hikes, the minutes said.

“What equity markets needed to see for the recent strength to continue was what we got from the minutes,” said Michael James, managing director of equity trading at Wedbush Securities in Los Angeles.

Since the Fed’s last meeting on Nov. 1-2, investors have been more optimistic that price pressures have begun to ease, meaning smaller rate hikes could reduce inflation.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (.DJI) rose 95.96 points, or 0.28%, to 34,194.06, the S&P 500 (.SPX) gained 23.68 points, or 0.59%, to 4,027.26 , and the Nasdaq Composite (.IXIC) added 110.91 points, or 0.99%, to 11,285.32.

Trading volume was thin ahead of Thursday’s Thanksgiving holiday, with the U.S. stock market open for a half session on Friday.

Earlier Wednesday, a mixed bag of economic data sent the yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note lower, helping stocks rise.

The number of Americans filing new jobless claims rose more than expected last week, and US business activity contracted for a fifth straight month in November. Consumer sentiment rose and home sales rose above expectations. Read more

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S., November 22, 2022. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

“What I think you’re seeing is renewed investor enthusiasm, fueled by those seeing that beautiful light at the end of what has been a very dark tunnel. And there was so much money on the sidelines rushing into the markets waiting to come back into action,” said portfolio manager Moez Kassam of Anson Funds.

Heavyweights including Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O) and Meta Platforms Inc (META.O) rose 1.00% and 0.72% respectively.

Tesla Inc (TSLA.O) rose 7.82%, Citigroup upgraded the electric vehicle maker’s stock to “neutral” from a “sell” rating.

Deere & Co ( DE.N ) rose 5.03 percent after the farm equipment maker reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit.

Nordstrom Inc fell 4.24 percent as the fashion retailer cut its profit forecast amid steep discounts to attract inflation-conscious customers.

Volume on US exchanges was 9.25 billion shares, compared to the 11.6 billion average for the full session over the past 20 trading days.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a ratio of 1.97 to 1; on the Nasdaq, a 1.61 to 1 ratio favored the advancers.

The S&P 500 posted 21 new 52-week highs and no new lows, while the Nasdaq Composite posted 97 new highs and 126 new lows.

Reporting by Carolina Mandl, Shreyashi Sanyal and Ankika Biswas; Editing by Richard Chang, Rosalba O’Brien and Chris Reese

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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