Stocks added gains on Wednesday in a broad-based rally as investors went on a buying spree. Spurred by data released showing US manufacturing had its best year since 2014 expanding in December at its quickest pace in three months.
The Federal Reserve released minutes from its December meeting showing consensus for gradual rate hikes in 2018 and dissent on how many. The Federal Open Markets Committee minutes showed economic projections by Fed members and stated: "The Committee expects that economic conditions will evolve in a manner that will warrant only gradual increases in the federal funds rate."
he central bank said it would be largely accomodative in determing size and timing of future adjustments to its target range for the fed rate. On the commodities front, oil soared to its highest since December 2014. West Texas Intermediate oil for February delivery rose $1.26 at $61.63 a barrel. Gold slipped from its four-month high on Tuesday down 0.2% to $1,315.24 an ounce.
The Dow jumped +0.40% to a record high. NASDAQ rose +0.84% to another record high. The S&P 500 cruised past 2,700 barrier for the first time and finished up +0.64% powered by technology gains. The sector advanced +1.09%. Energy rose +1.53%. The biggest movers on the market-weighted index was electricity and natural gas company, Scana, up +22.59% on news that rival Dominion Energy (-3.85%) would buy it. Ulta Beauty rose +6.75% and Nvidia was up +6.58%. Other leading tech issues was Advanced Micro Devices up +5.19%.
(4:05 PM EST)