While the Standard & Poor’s 500 index, the benchmark for most mutual funds, jumped 16.86 points or 0.86 percent to end the day at 1,982.85, the Nasdaq composite surged 45.45 points or 1.02 percent to 4,512.19 in the closing trade on Friday. The Dow rose 167.35 points or 0.99 percent to close at 17,113.15 on the last trading day of the week.
The reports showed that the US economic data was mixed, with the new single-family houses sales jumping to their highest level in over six years.
The government figures showed that the American economy expanded at the fastest pace in over two years at a rate of 4.6 percent annually in the spring. It was followed by a strong reading of consumer sentiment in September.
The US Commerce Department also revised second-quarter economic growth to an annual rate of 4.6 percent from the previous 4.2 percent. On the other hand, the orders for US durable goods declined 18.2 percent, thanks to a major drop in the volatile transportation sector.
Bill Lynch, director of investment at Hinsdale Associates, said, “Most of the US economic reports came in as expected.”
He called the newsflow this week as far more demure amid the two big events of Scotland independence vote and Alibaba’s initial public offering debut in the US.
“This week the market was pretty much devoid of anything major. There was a combination of all these little factors that when added up caused some volatility,” Lynch said.
Art Hogan, Wunderlich Securities’ chief market strategist, said, “The jerkiness in trade was really typical of volatility at the end of the quarter as investors square positions and take profits.”
Nike stocks surged after turning in higher profits, contributing to the Dow Jones industrial average higher. Nike jumped 12 percent on reports of solid sales and lower taxes that drove the company’s quarterly profit up 23 percent.
Apple’s shares dropped 3.8 percent on Thursday following glitch-ridden iO8 update and ‘bendgate’ complaints reported with its latest iPhone models. The tech giant, however, rallied 2.9 percent on Friday after it released a new version of a software update to check the glitches in iPhones.
The stocks of pharmaceutical companies retreated after the US Treasury Department on Tuesday introduced new tax rules that were designed to curb inversion deals, in which American firms undergo merger with foreign businesses to relocate in a lower tax address and avert heavy US taxes.
On the commodity trading front, the precious and industrial metals made slight moves with the gold price falling USD 6.50 to settle at USD 1,215.40 an ounce and the silver price declining 10 cents to USD 17.54 an ounce. Copper price remain unchanged at USD 3.03 a pound.
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