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Benchmark US indices edged higher on Tuesday, May 17, lifted by gains in technology, retail, and bank stocks after strong retail sales data eased investors' concerns over a slow economic growth.
The S&P 500 rose 2.02% to 4,088.85. The Dow Jones rose 1.34% to 32,654.59. The NASDAQ Composite was up 2.76% to 11,984.52, and the small-cap Russell 2000 rose 3.19% to 1,840.30.
Bank stocks rallied after Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway Inc. said that it invested around US$3 billion in Citigroup Inc. (C). The Citigroup stock rose 8.25%, while JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) and Bank of America Corporation (BAC) gained 3.35% and 3.27%, respectively.
Home improvement retailer The Home Depot, Inc. (HD) stock soared 2.05% after the company raised its guidance for the year and said that consumers were spending more on their shopping trips.
Shares of Walmart Inc. (WMT) fell sharply in intraday trading after the retailer reported downbeat earnings blamed on supply-chain disruptions and high labor costs. It also trimmed its annual profit guidance, indicating a bigger hit to margins. The WMT stock fell 11.30% after the quarterly results.
United Airlines Holdings, Inc. (UAL) stock gained 7.85% after the company lifted its revenue forecast for the ongoing quarter amid a travel boom. Other airline stocks like Spirit Airlines, Inc. (SAVE) and Delta Air Lines, Inc. (DAL) also rose 7.01% and 6.76%, respectively.
The Commerce Department on Tuesday said that the US retail sales saw robust growth in April as consumers spent more on vehicles and restaurants, giving a significant impetus to the economy as the second quarter kicked in. The US retail sales surged 0.9% to US$677.7 billion in April, the fourth straight monthly gain.
Meanwhile, a new Federal Reserve data showed that US industrial production rose 1.1% in April, also a fourth straight monthly gain, rising at least 0.8%, while manufacturing output rose 0.8%.
The strong retail sales data showed that elevated inflation and higher interest rates haven't reduced consumer demands or dampened their sentiments.
Technology, basic materials, and consumer discretionary sectors led gains in the S&P 500 index on Tuesday. Ten out of 11 sectors of the index stayed in the green, while staples were the laggards.
In the technology sector, Apple Inc. (AAPL) increased by 2.54%, Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) soared 2.03%, and NVIDIA Corporation (NVDA) jumped 5.29%. Broadcom Inc. (AVGO) and ASML Holding N.V. (ASML) added 4.37% and 4.99%, respectively.
In consumer discretionary stocks, Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) grew 4.11%, Tesla, Inc. (TSLA) surged 5.15%, and Alibaba Group Holding Limited (BABA) rose 6.37%. Nike, Inc. (NKE) and Booking Holdings Inc. (BKNG) advanced 2.93% and 4.92%, respectively.
In the consumer staples sector, Target Corporation (TGT) decreased by 1.41%, The Kraft Heinz Company (KHC) fell 2.09%, and Dollar General Corporation (DG) declined 2.83%. Keurig Dr Pepper Inc. (KDP) and The Hershey Company (HSY) tumbled 2.73% and 1.71%, respectively.
In the crypto space, Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) increased by 1.49% and 1.50%, respectively. The global crypto market cap rose 1.57% to US$1.29 trillion at 4:22 pm ET on May 17.
Gold futures were down 0.10% to US$1,812.12 per ounce. Silver increased by 0.32% to US$21.620 per ounce, while copper rose 1.01% to US$4.2340.
Brent oil futures decreased by 2.15% to US$111.78 per barrel and WTI crude was down 1.90% to US$109.69.
The 30-year Treasury bond yields were up 3.51% to 3.192, while the 10-year bond yields rose 4.04% to 2.995.
US Dollar Futures Index decreased by 0.78% to US$103.390.
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