The S&P looks set to obtain its eighth quarterly gain in a row hitting a record intraday high of 2,519.36. This is its sixth straight monthly rise and longest winning streak since May 2013.
For the Dow, this is the longest since September 1997 when it saw 11 quarterly gains. It rose 22,405.09 points or +0.11%. Nasdaq rose +0.66% to 6,495.96.
The quarterly boom has been aided by gains in technology that saw a rise of 8% making it this year’s best performer to date up 25%. The energy and materials sectors of the S&P 500 are both up 5.6%.
- Dow 22,405.09 +0.11%
- S&P 500 2,519.36 +0.37%
- Nasdaq 6,495.96 +0.66%
- Russell 2000 1,491.29 +0.17%
- NYSE Composite 12,204.28 +0.20%
- Gold 1,282.90 -0.44%
- Oil WTI $51.59 0.0%
- 10-Year Treasury 2.329 +0.0224
December interest rate hike debate continues
Treasury yields rose suddenly on reports that Kevin Warsh, a former Fed governor, met with President Donald Trump on Thursday to discuss his potential nomination as Fed chair replacing Janet Yellen. The meeting was also seen as the reason for a boost in financial shares.
Trump’s tax-cut plan and speculation over year-end interest rate rises have dominated markets for most of the week. Speaking at a conference on Fintech today, Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank President Patrick Harker said he has "penciled in" an interest rate hike in December. He added that there could possibly be a further three in 2018.
His remarks come after opposing comments from St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank President James Bullard on Wednesday. He said: “US inflation has surprised to the downside in recent months, and the surprise is unlikely to reverse during 2017.”
Epilepsy drug company stock soars
Market leading stocks included pharmaceutical company Zogenix Inc that specialises in central nervous system disorders that soared +171.60%.
This followed positive results from its first phase 3 trial for its investigational drug, ZX008 (low-dose fenfluramine hydrochloride), for the treatment of Dravet syndrome, a rare, but catastrophic form of epilepsy.
CEO Stephen Farr says the company remains on track to seek regulatory approval in the second half of 2018.
Roku ahead of the pack
Following its Thursday debut internet set-top box maker Roku Inc was up +12.94% in Friday trading. It made $219m in an initial public offering (IPO) that valued the company at roughly $1.3bn, and shares zoomed nearly 68% higher than the $14 IPO price to close at $23.50.
Its broad selection of connectivity devices at various price points has put Roku at the head of the pack. According to market research company eMarketer, a Roku device is being used more than Google, Apple and Amazon devices.
It was used by almost 39 million people at least once in the month of July, representing 23% of all connected TV users. Second was Google’s Chromecast, which was used by 37 million followed by Amazon’s Fire TV (36 million users), and Apple TV at 21 million users.
Other winners were meat processor Tyson Foods up +7.90% after the company raised its full-year profit forecast and Wynn Resorts Ltd that was up +3.14%
Losers: Amongst the day's biggest decliners were SCANA, an energy-based holding company, that fell -4.90% after a shareholder class action lawsuit was filed. Other decliners were manufacturing company Arconic that was down -4.38% and GGP Inc, a publicly-traded real estate investment company, that was down -2.40%.
Quote of the day: "Low inflation is a concern, especially since the Fed may be under-estimating productivity, which means it may also be over-estimating inflation.” Philadelphia Federal Reserve Bank President Patrick Harker. Source: Reuters