shriram Logo




U.S. market ends mostly higher
Feb 24 2021 9:32AM
After moving sharply lower early in the session, stocks showed a substantial recovery over the course of the trading day on Tuesday. The major averages climbed well off their early lows, with the Dow and the S&P 500 reaching positive territory.

The Dow plunged by more than 360 points in early trading but ended the day up 15.66 points or 0.1 percent at 31,537.35. The S&P 500 also inched up 4.87 points or 0.1 percent to 3,881.37 after tumbling by as much as 71 points.

Meanwhile, the tech-heavy Nasdaq finished the session down 67.85 points or 0.5 percent at 13,465.20 but was well off the nearly one-month intraday low set in early trading.

The early sell-off on Wall Street reflected concerns about the outlook for inflation and the potential for higher interest rates due to the recent increase in bond yields.

The yields on ten-year notes and thirty-year bonds reached their highest intraday levels since the early days of the coronavirus pandemic earlier in the day.

However, selling pressure waned as traders reacted to Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell's prepared remarks before the Senate Banking Committee.

Powell reiterated interest rates will remain at near-zero levels and the Fed will continue its asset purchases at the current rate until "substantial further progress" has been made toward its goals of maximum employment and price stability.

The economy is a long way from our employment and inflation goals, and it is likely to take some time for substantial further progress to be achieved," Powell said.

With regard to inflation, Powell acknowledged that consumer prices have partially rebounded following the steep drop last spring but noted prices for sectors that have been most adversely affected by the pandemic remain "particularly soft."

The Fed chief said annual inflation remains below the central bank's 2 percent target and reiterated monetary policy is likely to remain unchanged until inflation is on track to moderately exceed 2 percent for "some time."

Traders subsequently seemed to use the early weakness on Wall Street as an opportunity to pick up stocks at relatively reduced levels.

On the U.S. economic front, the Conference Board released a report showing consumer confidence has improved more than expected in the month of February.

The Conference Board said its consumer confidence index rose to 91.3 in February from a downwardly revised 88.9 in January.

Economists had expected the consumer confidence index to inch up to 90.0 from the 89.3 originally reported for the previous month.

(Source:RTT News)