NEW YORK – Wall Street stocks rose Thursday, with the S&P 500 finishing at another record, after lackluster employment data bolstered expectations the Federal Reserve will remain dovish.
The Labor Department reported 744,000 new jobless claims, seasonally adjusted, in the week ended April 3, an increase of 16,000 from the previous week’s upwardly-revised level.
Though a negative sign for the economy, the disappointing labor figures “will convince the Fed that it needs to be patient before removing policy accommodation,” Briefing.com analyst Patrick O’Hare said.
In an appearance on an IMF panel, Fed Chair Jerome Powell again said that any rise in inflation would be ephemeral and signaled an accommodative stance on monetary policy.
The broad-based S&P 500 finished at a second straight record, climbing 0.4 percent to 4,097.17.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.2 percent to 33,503.57, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index jumped 1.0 percent to 13,829.31.
Karl Haeling of LBBW said investors were also pleased by statements from President Joe Biden indicating willingness to compromise on his proposed hike in the corporate tax.
Large technology companies were mostly higher, with Apple gaining 1.9 percent, Netflix 1.4 percent and Amazon 0.6 percent.
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