Wall Street's main indices rose for the second straight day on Thursday, May 26, buoyed by positive retail earnings and labor data - affording a glimmer of hope amid market turbulence.
The S&P 500 was up 1.99% to 4,057.84. The Dow Jones rose 1.61% to 32,637.19. The NASDAQ Composite increased by 2.68% to 11,740.65, and the small-cap Russell 2000 was up 2.17% to 1,838.24.
The Labor Department on Thursday said that new unemployment benefits claims fell by 8,000 to 210,000 last week, higher than average analysts' expectations. It should provide some relief to policymakers.
The Fed has already begun tightening its monetary policy and is gearing up for the next installment of interest rate increases. It is hoped that tightening the liquidity in the market might bring workers back to work while keeping the leash around inflation in check.
The market has been under pressure to fill the record number of vacancies post the health crisis.
In other economic news, the updated GDP data released by the Commerce Department on Thursday showed that the US economy declined 1.5% in April, more than its advance estimates of 1.4%. However, the positive sentiments from retail earnings outshined the GDP data.
On Thursday, all the sectors of the S&P 500 index were in positive territory. The consumer discretionary and information technology sectors were the top movers.
Shares of Dollar General Corporation (DG) and Dollar Tree, Inc. (DLTR) rallied 13.82% and 20.93%, respectively, after the discount store operators reported strong quarterly results.
Macy's Inc. (M) stock gained 17.96% after raising its profit guidance for the current fiscal year.
Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Limited (BABA) advanced 14.25% after its quarterly earnings topped analysts' estimates. However, it failed to give forward guidance.
The VMware, Inc. stock soared 3.21% after Broadcom Inc. (AVGO) confirmed that it would acquire the company for US$61 billion in a cash and stock deal. The AVGO stock rose 3.58%.
In the consumer discretionary sector, Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) increased by 4.03%, Tesla, Inc. (TSLA) gained 7.43%, and The Home Depot, Inc. (HD) surged 3.15%. Lowe's Companies, Inc. (LOW) and Nike, Inc. (NKE) advanced 3.70% and 4.38%, respectively.
In financial stocks, Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK-B) rose 1.25%, Visa Inc. (V) soared 2.31%, and JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) added 1.73%. Bank of America Corporation (BAC) and Mastercard Incorporated (MA) ticked up 2.32% and 1.49%, respectively.
In the technology sector, Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) added 1.12%, Apple Inc. (AAPL) jumped 2.32%, and NVIDIA Corporation (NVDA) surged 5.16%. ASML Holding N.V. (ASML) and Accenture plc (ACN) rose 2.19% and 4.26%, respectively.
In the crypto space, Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH) decreased by 0.70% and 6.56%, respectively. The global crypto market cap plunged 2.99% to US$1.22 trillion at 4:35 pm ET on May 26.
Futures & Commodities
Gold futures were up 0.22% to US$1,850.38 per ounce. Silver increased by 0.67% to US$22.017 per ounce, while copper rose 0.45% to US$4.2735.
Brent oil futures increased by 2.99% to US$114.44 per barrel and WTI crude was up 3.59% to US$114.29.
The 30-year Treasury bond yields were up 0.19% to 2.971, while the 10-year bond yields fell 0.33% to 2.738.
US Dollar Futures Index decreased by 0.29% to US$101.782.