April 16, 2024

News and Political Commentary

Nasdaq Surges To Record High Amid Tech Sector Rally

2 min read

Stocks showed a strong move to the upside during trading on Friday, adding to the gains posted in Thursday’s session. With the extended upward move, the Nasdaq and S&P 500 once again reached new record closing highs.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq jumped 183.02 points or 1.1 percent to 16,274.94 and the S&P 500 climbed 40.81 points or 0.8 percent to 5,137.08. The narrower Dow posted a more modest gain, rising 90.99 points or 0.2 percent to 39,087.38.

For the week, the Nasdaq shot up by 1.7 percent and the S&P 500 advanced by 1.0 percent, but the Dow edged down by 0.1 percent.

The surge by the Nasdaq partly reflected substantial strength among computer hardware stocks following upbeat results from Dell (DELL), with the NYSE Arca Computer Hardware Index soaring by 6.9 percent to a record closing high.

Shares of Dell skyrocketed by 31.6 percent after the computer maker reported fourth quarter results that exceeded analyst estimates on both the top and bottom lines.

The upbeat results from Dell also contributed to significant strength among semiconductor stocks, as reflected by the 4.3 percent spike by the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index. The index also reached a record closing high.

Biotechnology and networking stocks also saw considerable strength, while gold, oil service and pharmaceutical stocks turned in some of the best performances outside the tech sector.

The strength on Wall Street also came following the release of a report from the Institute for Supply Management showing manufacturing activity in the U.S. unexpectedly contracted at an accelerated rate in the month of February.

The ISM said its manufacturing PMI dipped to 47.8 in February from 49.1 in January, with a reading below 50 indicating contraction. Economists had expected the index to inch up to 49.5.

The University of Michigan also released revised data showing consumer sentiment in the U.S. unexpectedly deteriorated in the month of February.

The report said the consumer sentiment index for February was…

2024-03-01 16:11:08

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