Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Yellen rally hits day 2, sending stocks to 2016 highs (30 March 2016)

Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen's dovish tone in a Tuesday speech appeased global markets by assuring a 'cautious' path to normalization.

Wall Street celebrated the second day of the Janet Yellen rally Wednesday as stocks closed at 2016 highs again following the Federal Reserve chief's market-friendly speech that stressed the U.S. central bank is in no rush to increase interest rates.

The Dow, which closed up nearly 100 points Tuesday after Yellen's dovish speech, gained another 84 points, or 0.5%, to close at 17,717 Wednesday. The broader Standard & Poor's 500 stock index was 0.4% higher and the Nasdaq composite gained 0.5%. Both the Dow and S&P 500 have closed at 2016 highs two consecutive days and have more than completely wiped out losses from the worst start to a year ever for stocks.

With one trading day left in the first quarter, the Dow is up 1.7% for 2016 and the S&P 1.0%. Only the Nasdaq remains in the red for 2016, down 2.8%. This is a stark turn from the dark days of early February, when the three major U.S. indexes had 2016 losses ranging from 10% to 15% when the market hits its low for the year.

Yellen, who said it is prudent for the Fed to "proceed cautiously" in its push to normalize interest rates, powered a global stock market rally. Aside from a drop in Japan, stocks rallied sharply in Hong Kong, mainlaind China, India, Australia, London, Germany and Paris.

SPY daily; 30 March 2016

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