U.S. Equities Advance for Seventh Day as Bank Stocks Rally

Five Reasons to Be Constructive on U.S. Stocks

U.S. stocks climbed for a seventh straight session as rallying financial shares added momentum to an advance that sent seven of 11 sectors higher on the day, capping the longest streak of gains since September 2013.

The S&P 500 Index added 0.5 percent to a record 2,349 at 4 p.m., as investors assessed economic data that included January inflation numbers that climbed faster than expected. The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 0.5 percent to 20,611.86. The Nasdaq Composite added 0.66 percent to 5,819.44.

  • Financial stocks climbed 1.2% as the 10-Year Treasury yield jumped to 2.5%
  • Utility and real estate stocks were the worst-performing groups, each slipping at least 0.3%
  • About 7.1 billion shares traded hands, the heaviest volume since Feb. 1
  • VIX added 11.5% after jumping above 11.8 as contracts expiring today gained at 9:10 a.m.
  • Procter & Gamble Co. rose 3.7% after Trian Fund Management revealed a new stake
  • Defensive sectors including health-care shares also gained ground, a signal that the stock market rally is broadening, said Stephane Barbier de la Serre, a strategist at Makor Capital Markets in Geneva
  • According to a note from JPMorgan’s technical analyst Jason Hunter, the rally in U.S. stocks has entered an “acceleration phase,” with broad sector participation
    • January consumer prices rose 2.5% YoY, compared with an expected 2.4%, and were ahead 0.6% MoM, compared with an estimated 0.3%
    • January retail sales also increased more than forecast, suggesting consumers are positioned to buttress economic growth
    • Wednesday’s data lifted the odds for a Fed rate increase in March to 40 percent from 30 percent two days ago
    • After-market Wednesday: CBS (CBS), Cimarex Energy (XEC), TripAdvisor (TRIP), Williams Cos (WMB), CF Industries Holdings (CF), Marathon Oil (MRO),Avis Budget Group (CAR), International Flavors & Fragrances (IFF), Kraft Heinz (KHC), NetApp (NTAP), Stericycle (SRCL), Varex Imaging (VREX), Applied Materials (AMAT), Chemours (CC), Equinix (EQIX), Cisco Systems (CSCO), Marriott International (MAR)
    • Pre-market Thursday: Waste Management (WM), Tempur Sealy International (TPX), Laboratory Corp of America Holdings (LH), MGM Resorts (MGM), SCANA (SCG), Alexion Pharmaceuticals (ALXN), PG&E (PCG), Cabela’s (CAB), GNC Holdings (GNC), Charter Communications (CHTR),Duke Energy (DUK), Zoetis (ZTS), Ameren (AEE)
  • Stoxx Europe 600 Index advanced 0.3% at the close; lenders led gains, with Credit Agricole SA up the most after reporting higher profit at its LCL consumer-banking division

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