NEW YORK, RAW – US stocks have risen as Goldman Sachs was the latest big bank to report strong results and better-than-expected retail sales eased worries about demand.
The three major stock indexes were on track to post gains for the week as well.
Goldman Sachs Group jumped 3.4 per cent, giving the Dow its biggest boost, as a record wave of deal-making activity drove a surge in the bank’s quarterly profit.
Other big lenders also rose, and the S&P 500 bank index was up 2.6 per cent.
Results from the big financial institutions this week have provided a strong start to third-quarter US earnings, though investors will still be watching for signs of impact from supply chain disruptions and higher energy and other prices in the coming weeks.
S&P 500 earnings are now forecast to have risen 32 per cent in the third quarter from a year ago. The forecast, based on results from 41 of the S&P 500 companies and estimates for the rest, is up from 29.4 per cent at the start of October, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.
“We’re starting to get into an earnings-driven rally here that I hope lasts. We’ll really see the results in the next couple of weeks as a great bulk of companies in all sectors report,” said Peter Tuz, president of Chase Investment Counsel in Charlottesville, Virginia.
Investors also digested a Commerce Department report that showed retail sales rose unexpectedly in September, while a preliminary reading for consumer sentiment in October came slightly below expectations.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 395.05 points, or 1.13 per cent, to 35,307.61, the S&P 500 gained 35.98 points, or 0.81 per cent, to 4,474.24 and the Nasdaq Composite added 72.49 points, or 0.49 per cent, to 14,895.92.
Airlines and other travel-related company shares edged higher, with the White House announcing it will lift travel restrictions for fully-vaccinated foreign nationals effective on November 8, at land borders and for air travel.
The S&P 1500 Airlines index was up 0.3 per cent, while cruise operator Carnival Corp was up 0.7 per cent.
Moderna Inc shares were down 3.5 per cent. A Wall Street Journal report, citing people familiar with the matter, said the US Food and Drug Administration is delaying its decision on authorising Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine for adolescents to check if the shot could increase the risk of heart inflammation.
The news came a day after an FDA panel voted to recommend booster shots of its COVID-19 vaccine for Americans aged 65 and older and high-risk people.
Shares of cryptocurrency and blockchain-related firms including Riot Blockchain gained as bitcoin hit $US60,000 ($A80,943) for the first time since April.
Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 1.74-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.23-to-1 ratio favoured advancers.
The S&P 500 posted 54 new 52-week highs and no new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 116 new highs and 46 new lows.