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Stimulus Hopes Drive Dow but Interest Rate Fears Loom

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NEW YORK, Feb 16 Reuters The Dow Jones Industrial Average notched a record closing high on Tuesday as cyclical sectors gained on the prospect of more fiscal aid to lift the U.S. economy from a coronavirusdriven slump.

The Nasdaq, however, dipped as technology stocks moved lower, while concerns over rising interest rates kept the benchmark SP 500 little changed.

Sectors poised to benefit the most from a reopening economy, including energy and financials, had the biggest percentage gains. President Joe Biden has pitched a 1.9 trillion pandemic relief bill and is pressing Congress to pass it in the coming weeks in order to get 1,400 stimulus checks to Americans and bolster unemployment payments.

The SP 500 banking index climbed as the yield on 10year U.S. Treasuries hit its highest since February 2020.

We came into this week with a positive perspective on the Biden administrations attempt to deliver a sizeable package, said Quincy Krosby, chief market strategist at Prudential Financial in Newark, New Jersey. Markets have greeted that with positive moves.

Conversely, utilities and real estate posted the biggest percentage losses among SP 500 sectors. Utilities and real estate, because of their steady earnings and high dividend yields, are often considered bond proxies and tend to move in tandem with Treasuries. Shares of homebuilders, which are ratesensitive, also fell. The PHLX Housing Index ended 2.5 lower.

Technology stocks slipped as well. That sector includes…

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