U.S. stocks ended mixed, Dow closing at record high above 40,000

By UnreguserXing Yue
  • World
  • Saturday, 18 May 2024

NEW YORK, May 17 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks ended mixed on Friday, buoyed by stronger-than-expected economic growth and contracting inflation.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 134.21 points, or 0.34 percent, to 40,003.59 for the first time in history. The S&P 500 added 6.17 points, or 0.12 percent, to 5,303.27. The Nasdaq Composite Index shed 12.35 points, or 0.07 percent, to 16,685.97.

Eight of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors ended in green, with energy and materials leading the gainers by going up 1.37 percent and 0.85 percent, respectively. Meanwhile, technology and consumer staples led the laggards by dropping 0.48 percent and 0.26 percent, respectively.

The leading indicators for the U.S. economy declined in April for the second consecutive month, signaling "serious headwinds to growth." The index of leading economic indicators, which is meant to predict the economic outlook, dropped 0.6 percent last month, according to the Conference Board on Friday. While the index "no longer signals a forthcoming recession, they still point to serious headwinds to growth ahead," said Justyna Zabinska-La Monica, senior manager of business-cycle indicators at the Conference Board.

Federal Reserve voting member Michelle Bowman stated that she remains "willing to raise the target range for the federal funds rate at a future meeting" if upcoming data indicates that progress on inflation has stalled or reversed.

However, softer economic data in recent weeks bolsters the argument that investors may finally receive some much-anticipated rate cuts in 2024, UBS argued in a Friday note. "We continue to believe recent economic data underpin our view that a return of disinflation should allow the Fed to start easing policy later this year," the bank wrote.

On the corporate front, shares of Walmart and Caterpillar, both up 1 percent, led the Dow. In the S&P 500, Chubb and Valero Energy were the biggest gainers, rising more than 3 percent and 4 percent, respectively.

Follow us on our official WhatsApp channel for breaking news alerts and key updates!

Next In World

Hungarian opposition party to join European Parliament's centre-right bloc
Dutchman Rutte to be NATO's new secretary-general, Dutch news outlet NOS reports citing sources
Ukraine investigates suspected beheading of soldier by Russia, prosecutors say
EU will help finance Poland's border security, says Tusk
Three bodies found near migrant shipwreck off Italy
Greece to set up its first sovereign wealth fund, reform posting, bus services
Austrian pro-tax heiress gives wealth to social, climate, left-wing groups
French far-right leader Bardella slams Mbappe on election comments
UN rights chief: Rohingya have 'nowhere to flee' in western Myanmar fighting
Soaring temperatures scorch pilgrims on Haj in Saudi Arabia

Others Also Read