Wall Street climbs higher after Powell’s speech

Wall Street climbs higher after Powell’s speech

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The US stock exchanges traded with solid increase on Wednesday. Investors responded to a speech by Fed boss Jerome Powell. There is also hope that the United States and China will come closer during the G20 summit at the end of the week. The Dow-Jones index ended 2.5 percent higher at 25.366.43 points. The broad S & P 500 added 2.3 percent to 2743.78 points, which is the biggest gain for the index since March. Technology index Nasdaq gained 3 percent at 7291.59 points.

Central bank chief Powell said, among other things, that interest rates in the US are only slightly below the neutral level. This caused speculation on Wall Street that the Federal Reserve is ticking with a gradual approach for raising interest rates. The exchange rate of the dollar was moving considerably. The euro was worth $1.1369, versus $1.1284 at the closing of the European stock markets earlier in the day.

The fading tensions between China and the US also seemed to provide relief. Large industrial stocks such as Caterpillar and Boeing gained almost 5 percent.

Software company Salesforce also made a price jump of more than 10 percent. The quarterly figures of the company turned out to be much better than what analysts predicted on average. Jewelry chain Tiffany was down almost 12 percent as Chinese tourists spent less and disappointing same-store sales guidance. Retail chain Sears closed 18 percent. There are reports that Eddie Lampert and investor Cyrus Capital Partners are preparing for a takeover in order to keep the ailing Sears afloat.

Ford rose 1.4 percent also grabbed attention of investors after the car company announced cut in shifts at factories in Kentucky and Michigan. With this, Ford wants to save costs and increase its production. In contrast to General Motors (GM), which eliminated more than 14,000 jobs earlier this week, no jobs will be lost at Ford.

Oil prices showed a sharp decline. A barrel of American oil became 2.4 percent cheaper at $50.32. Brent oil fell 2.5 percent in price to $58.73 a barrel.

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I handle much of news coverage for tech stocks, and occasionally cover companies in different sectors. In the past, I've written for other financial sites and published independent investment research, primarily on tech companies. I have a B.A. in Economics from Columbia University. I'm based out of San Diego, but grew up in Southern New Jersey. I play basketball and tennis in my spare time, am a long-time (and long-suffering) fan of Philadelphia's sports teams, and alternate daily between using an iPad Air, a Galaxy Note 3, and one or two Windows PCs.

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