Wall Street closes higher as concerns about default by the Federal Reserve and Russia recede

  • The energy sector rises with oil and the performance of the defense sectors is below par
  • US weekly jobless claims fall amid strong demand for workers
  • Indexes rise: Dow 1.23%, S&P 500 1.23%, Nasdaq 1.33%

(Reuters) – Wall Street’s three main indexes advanced more than 1% on Thursday as investors considered the Federal Reserve’s path to raise interest rates and eased concerns about the prospect of a Russian default after creditors receive payments.

Investors are reassured that Russia may, at least for now, have avoided what would have been its first foreign-bond default in a century. Two market sources told Reuters on Thursday that this was because creditors received payments, in dollars, for Russian bond coupons that became due this week. Read more

The S&P 500, Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq posted their biggest 3-session gains since early November 2020 after reports boosted risk appetite in a market already benefiting from bargain hunting. The S&P 500 also marked its third consecutive day, rising more than 1%.

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The Federal Reserve raised interest rates by a quarter of a percentage point on Wednesday as expected and predicted a solid plan for further increases while policy makers also trimmed their economic growth forecast for this year. Read more

News of the Russian push and the break of technical pullback lines “towards the upside” in indices, including the S&P and Nasdaq, boosted stocks, according to Michael James, managing director of equity trading at Wedbush Securities.

“It gives investors an increased level of cautious optimism and is a change from the massive pessimism we’ve been seeing since early January,” James said.

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“People are getting more and more comfortable with higher rates of facts,” he said. “Chairman (Jerome) Powell has been talking about this since early December.” “The fact that there were no major negative surprises in the Fed’s plans released from the meeting, and Powell’s comment, gave people a sense that we may have seen it as bad as it will be in the near term.”

Phil Blancato, CEO of Ladenburg Thalmann Asset Management in New York, described the Fed’s plans as pessimistic, and also said continuing peace talks between Russia and Ukraine helped the mood.

“What you see today is just a spillover from yesterday,” Blancato said. “There is a potential solution to the conflict abroad, and the positive effects of the Fed and stocks are at a very fair entry point, providing an opportunity to add risk.”

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, US, March 17, 2022. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

Dow Jones Industrial Average (.DJI) The Standard & Poor’s Index rose 417.66 points, or 1.23%, to 34,480.76 points (.SPX) It rose 53.81 points, or 1.23%, to 4,411.67 points, and the Nasdaq Composite (nineteenth) It added 178.23 points, or 1.33%, to 13,614.78 points.

energy sector (.SPNY) The biggest percentage gainer was among the 11 major industry sectors in S&P, closing 3.5% higher as oil prices rose 8% as the crude oil market rebounded after several days of losses with renewed focus on supply shortages in the coming weeks due to sanctions. imposed on Russia.

The underdeveloped sector was the most defensive industry with utilities (.SPLRCU) Adding only 0.5% and basic consumer goods (.SPLRCS)which rose 0.6%.

Standard & Poor’s index of interest rate sensitive banks (.SPXBK) It ended the session slightly higher after falling 2% earlier in the session and up 3.7% on Wednesday. The US Treasury yield curve rebounded after earlier hitting its lowest level in more than two years.

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Russian and Ukrainian officials met again on Thursday for peace talks but said their positions were far apart. Read more

Earlier Thursday, data showed that weekly jobless claims fell last week as demand for labor remained strong, setting the economy for another month of solid job gains. Read more

Advance issues outnumbered declining issues on the New York Stock Exchange by 4.10 to 1; On Nasdaq, the ratio was 2.93 to 1 in favor of advanced traders.

The S&P 500 hit a new 52-week 18-week high and there were no new lows. The Nasdaq recorded 46 new highs and 53 new lows.

12.88 billion shares changed hands on US stock exchanges compared to the 20-day moving average of 14.18 billion.

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Additional reporting by Sinad Karo, Devik Jain, Susan Mathew and Bansari Mayor Kamdar in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil de Silva, Sriraj Kalovila and Aurora Ellis

Our criteria: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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