US stocks rebounded in a broad rally in the afternoon on Thursday, erasing their midweek losses.
Major indexes faltered as investors struggled to gauge the direction of trade policy between the world’s two largest economies, but then recovered in the final hour of trading.
The moves lifted all but two of the S&P 500’s 11 sectors for the day, helping the major indexes head off steep declines racked up earlier in the week.
Stocks struggled to steer as the US government took a more aggressive stance on China, imposing tariffs on its exports and suggesting it may impose new restrictions on Chinese investment.
Some investors and analysts worry that escalating tensions could lead to restrictive trade policies around the world that hurt global growth.
Still, others argue that much of the back-and-forth between Washington and Beijing appears to be ongoing for now – and the chances of an all-out trade war breaking out remain slim. US growth still looks strong, especially relative to economic growth elsewhere, which should help support further gains in the nine-year bull market, analysts said.
“For the most part, we think a lot of what we’ve seen has been noise,” said Bruce Bittles, chief investment strategist at Robert W. Baird & Co. He added that he was more concerned about other risks such as monetary policy tightening and potential headwinds from a stronger dollar.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 98.46 points, or 0.4%, to 24,216.05, reversing price after slipping as much as 120 points earlier in the trading session. The S&P 500 added 16.68 points, or 0.6%, to 2,716.31 and the Nasdaq Composite advanced 58.60 points, or 0.8%, to 7,503.68.
Tech stocks rebounded from their losses on Wednesday, helping major indexes climb. Accenture jumped $9.16, or 5.9%, to $164.50 while Take-Two Interactive added 4.10, or 3.6%, to 118.06.
Financial stocks rose as the yield on the benchmark 10-year US Treasury rose slightly to 2.849% from 2.827% on Wednesday. Higher rates tend to increase banks’ net interest margins, a key measure of lending profitability.
Morgan Stanley added 1.10, or 2.3%, to 48.29 and Citigroup added 1.42, or 2.2%, to 66.88.
Pharmacies and parcel delivery companies have come under pressure from Amazon.comit’s
latest companies in the shipping and healthcare industries.
The e-commerce giant said on Thursday it was buying online pharmacy PillPack, while encouraging entrepreneurs to form small delivery companies to get packages to consumers’ doorsteps.
CVS Health fell 4.27, or 6.1%, to 65.78, while United Parcel Service and FedEx fell more than 1% each.
Elsewhere, the Stoxx Europe 600 slipped 0.8%, weighed down by declines in the tech sector. The Shanghai Composite closed at its lowest level in more than two years, while South Korea’s Kospi Composite index fell to its lowest level since May 2017.
Corrections & Amplifications
Gilles Pradère is manager at RAM Active Investments. An earlier version of this article incorrectly identified the company as RAM Active Investment. (June 28)
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