Wall Road rebounds in broad rally as Omicron jitters abate By Reuters


© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The hand of a sculpture of former US President George Washington is pictured with the facade of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in Manhattan in New York City, New York, USA, 28 January 2021. REUTERS / Mike Segar

By Stephen Culp

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Wall Street rebounded on Thursday with a broad rally, gaining ground that was lost in the previous session’s steep sell-off as investors stalked bargains while digesting the effects of a changing pandemic.

All three US indices were green, with an emphasis on value over growth, and economically sensitive small caps and transportation outperformed the broader market.

The blue-chip Dow was well on its way to seeing its best one-day percentage increase since Nov. 9, 2020, with Boeing (NYSE 🙂 Co providing the largest increase.

“Of course there are concerns about Omicron, but there is a feeling that infections are not as severe as originally thought,” said Oliver Pursche, senior vice president at Wealthspire Advisors in New York. Second, economic data, especially work data, is strong.

As world governments scrutinize how to respond to the nascent COVID-19 variant Omicron, the United States will require private health insurers to conduct tests at home, a policy expected to go into effect Jan. 15.

The Omicron variant spooked the markets for about a week and hit travel-related stocks especially hard as a patchwork of new restrictions was put in place around the world, but those companies rebounded in Thursday’s session.

The S&P 1500 Airlines and Hotel and Restaurants indices gained 7.7% and 4.1% respectively.

Data on unemployment claims and planned layoffs provided further evidence that employers are increasingly reluctant to hand out pink slips of paper in a tight labor market, reflecting booming demand that collides with labor shortages and low labor force participation.

Labor shortages, combined with persistent supply chain constraints, has helped remove the word “temporarily” from the Federal Reserve’s inflation vocabulary as wages and prices continue to rise, and could very well result in rate hikes coming sooner and faster than many had hoped.

“Should the Fed raise rates earlier than expected, it could negatively impact markets in the short term, but it gives the Fed room to maneuver when the next recession approaches,” added Pursche.

Market participants are now turning their gaze to the eagerly awaited November employment report from the Department of Labor, which is expected on Friday.

It rose by 688.29 points or 2.02% to 34,710.33 points, the increase by 73.8 points or 1.64% to 4,586.84 points and the increase by 126.91 points or 0.83 % to 15,380.96.

All 11 major sectors of the S&P 500 were green, with financials seeing the largest percentage gains while healthcare the least.

Boeing Co rose 6.0% after China’s aviation authority awarded the aircraft maker’s 737 MAX seal of approval.

Kroger (NYSE 🙂 Co climbed 12.5% ​​to the top of the S&P 500 after the grocery retailer raised its full-year sales and earnings guidance.

Consumer credit company Visa Inc (NYSE :), Mastercard Inc (NYSE 🙂 and American Express Co (NYSE 🙂 all gained more than 4%.

Increasing issues outweighed declining issues on the NYSE by a ratio of 2.38 to 1; on the Nasdaq favored a ratio of 1.46 to 1 advanced.

The S&P 500 posted four new 52-week highs and 12 new lows; the Nasdaq Composite made nine new highs and 547 new lows.

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