S&P 500 records best first quarter since 2019 going into Easter break

S&P 500 records best first quarter since 2019 going into Easter break



In an impressive display of resilience, the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average soared to new heights in New York on Thursday, marking a significant prelude to the Easter holiday break. This rally not only set new records but also signaled the best start to the year for the S&P 500 since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Dow Jones inches closer to 40,000 milestone
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed the day at 39,807.37, up by 0.1 percent, reaching a new all-time high and edging closer to the elusive 40,000-point mark.This incremental rise reflects the market’s steady upward trajectory and investors’ growing confidence in the economic outlook.
S&P 500 hits new record; Nasdaq experiences minor slip
Mirroring the Dow’s positive momentum, the S&P 500 also advanced by 0.1 percent to set a new record at 5,254.35. However, the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index experienced a slight decline of 0.1 percent, closing at 16,379.46. According to Art Hogan of B. Riley Financial, this represents a “broadening out” of the market rally, extending beyond the tech sector that has previously led gains.
European markets show mixed results
Across the Atlantic, European stock markets displayed mixed performances as traders anticipated fresh US inflation figures. London’s market reached a one-year high, while Frankfurt saw modest gains, and Paris remained flat. The anticipation of these figures comes amid ongoing inflation concerns that continue to shape global market sentiment.
Asian markets respond to Federal Reserve‘s interest rate speculation
In Asia, markets closed with mixed results following comments by Federal Reserve Governor Christopher Waller, suggesting a possible delay or reduction in US interest rate cuts. This statement led to a strengthening of the dollar against other currencies, including a stabilization of the yen after it hit a 34-year low against the dollar.
Oil prices rise amid supply concerns
Adding to the market’s dynamics, oil prices experienced a surge of more than 1.5 percent. This increase is attributed to ongoing worries about potential supply constraints, underscoring the complex interplay between commodity markets and broader economic indicators.
Watching the Fed’s next moves
Investors remain optimistic but cautious, with all eyes on the central banks’ next steps regarding interest rates. While inflation has shown signs of slowing, it remains a critical factor in the Federal Reserve, the European Central Bank, and the Bank of England’s rate decisions. The anticipation builds for the upcoming release of the personal consumption expenditures (PCE) index, which could provide further insight into inflation trends and monetary policy directions.
Wall Street‘s winning streak continues
As Wall Street closes another successful quarter, the market’s resilience is evident in the continued growth and record highs of major indices. This success story is underpinned by a solid US economy, hopeful signs of cooling inflation, and expectations of future rate cuts by the Federal Reserve. With the stock market wrapping up its fifth consecutive winning month, the stage is set for what many hope will be a sustained rally in the months to come.
(With inputs from agencies)





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