Stocks posted solid gains on Wall Street Wednesday, erasing their losses from a day earlier. Big-name investor favorites like Facebook, Apple and Amazon helped pull the market higher.
The S&P 500 was up 1.7%, more than it lost on Tuesday, when the index snapped a three-day winning streak. Bond yields held steady and crude oil prices headed higher.
Technology, the only sector that’s holding on to a gain for the year, accounted for much of the market’s upward move. Communication services companies and banks also helped drive the market higher. Markets in Europe and Asia also rose.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 369 points, or 1.5%, to 24,576. The Nasdaq composite, which is heavily weighted with technology stocks, rose 2.08%. Small-company stocks notched strong gains, another bullish signal. The Russell 2000 index was up 3%.
Despite Tuesday’s stumble, Wall Street is on track to recoup its losses from last week amid fresh hopes for a U.S. economic recovery in the second half of the year and optimism about a potential vaccine for COVID-19. A strong rally on Monday reversed all of the market’s losses for the month. The index is still down about 13% from its all-time high in February, however.
Investors are betting that the economy and corporate profits will begin to recover from the coronavirus pandemic as the U.S. and countries around the world slowly open up again. However, concerns remain that the relaxing of stay-at-home mandates and the reopening of businesses could lead to another surge in infections, potentially ushering in another wave of shutdowns.
The market is getting some insight into how companies are navigating the economic fallout from the coronavirus this week as several retailers report quarterly results. Lowe’s rose 0.10% Wednesday after the home improvement chain reported quarterly results that topped Wall Street’s forecasts.
Target reported strong first-quarter online sales growth as the outbreak put millions in lockdown. Its results also beat analysts’ forecasts, though the company’s shares were down 3.3%.
Royal Caribbean said it booked a $1.4 billion first-quarter loss as the cruise line operator was forced to suspend operations due the pandemic. And, its shares declined 3.4% after the company said its bookings for 2021 are within historical ranges.
The price of crude oil jumped 4.8%, its fifth straight gain.