NEW YORK (AFP) – Wall Street stocks concluded a strong week with fresh records on Friday (April 9), extending a bullish run for US equities propelled by optimistic growth expectations as more people are vaccinated.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 0.9 per cent to end the week at 33,800.60, a new all-time high. The blue-chip index climbed about 2 per cent for the week.
The broad-based S&P 500 gained 0.8 per cent to 4,128.80 to close at a third straight record, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 0.5 per cent to 13,900.19.
Stocks have been on a roll most of 2021, cheered by US President Joe Biden’s US$1.9 trillion (S$2.5 trillion) stimulus package enacted last month and an accelerating vaccination campaign in the world’s largest economy.
At the same time, the Federal Reserve has remained committed to highly accommodative monetary policies, a stance reiterated in recent days by chairman Jerome Powell.
“The market is convinced that the Fed is not going to change course for a very long time,” said Joe Manimbo, analyst at Western Union Holdings.
“The Fed is being more confident on the outlook, but they don’t want to change.”
Art Hogan, chief market strategist at National Securities, noted that the market took in stride data showing a jump in wholesale inflation.
Excluding volatile food and energy prices, the producer price index was up 0.6 per cent in March, and for the latest 12 months increased 3.1 per cent, still accelerating from recent levels, the report showed.
“Investors have gotten the message from the Fed that their new approach is to let inflation run hot until we’re at full employment,” Hogan said.
Among individual companies, Boeing fell 1 per cent after telling 16 airlines flying the 737 Max jet of a “potential electrical issue.”
The move prompted major US carriers to temporarily ground some of their Max planes.
Amazon gained 2.2 per cent after workers at an Alabama warehouse rejected a unionisation drive following a contentious campaign.