Markets Right Now: Tech, bank stocks lead USA indexes higher

Markets Right Now: Tech, bank stocks lead USA indexes higher

Trader Fran O'Connell works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Monday, March 26, 2018.

It was only yesterday Wall Street had experienced its biggest daily surge in 2.5 years, over subsiding trade war anxiety.

A steep, late-afternoon sell-off in technology companies pulled US stocks sharply lower Tuesday, knocking 344 points off the Dow Jones industrial average.

MARKETS OVERSEAS: In Europe, Germany's DAX rose 1.7 percent, while France's CAC 40 gained 1.2 percent.

The decline in bond yields helped pull banks and other financial stocks lower. The 30-company average had been down 493 points.

It was a sharp reversal after the stock market's worst week in two years.

"Certainly nothing's settled", said Rob Haworth, senior investment strategist at U.S. Bank Wealth Management.

What about buying the dip? The Dow tumbled 344.89 points, or 1.4 percent, to 23,857.71. The Nasdaq climbed 227 points, or 3.3 per cent, to 7,220. The S&P 500 was up 2.72 percent at 2,658.57. The end result: the market has recouped all of Friday's loss and then some.

TECH LOVE: Technology companies, which were big decliners last week and led Monday's market rally, continued to climb Tuesday.

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China also hit back on Trump's earlier aluminum and steel tariffs by threatening its own tariffs on about $3 billion worth of imports of U.S. goods, including pork, fruit, and wine. That prompted fears the spat might depress trade worldwide and set back the global economic recovery.

Investors were encouraged by signs Washington and Beijing are open to negotiating on trade.

"This declaration of tariffs on the president's part was his typical opening salvo into a negotiation process", said Randy Frederick, vice president of trading & derivatives at Charles Schwab. While these are aimed at protecting USA technology from China's predatory practices, not a few investors fear that China will respond with its own sanctions against major US tech firms. Microsoft shares posted the best performance, raising by 7.57%. Yields move opposite to prices. The Dow shed 1,100 points in the last two trading days of last week. Bank of America added $1.27, or 4.4 percent, to $30.44.

Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.83 percent. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 added almost 0.7 percent to 5,828.90.

Facebook ended barely higher after erasing an early slide triggered by new questions about collecting phone numbers and text messages from Android devices. The Federal Trade Commission on Monday announced it is investigating the company after reports that Cambridge Analytica abused the information of 50 million users. The stock eked out a gain of 67 cents, or 0.4 percent, to $160.06.

Traders welcomed the latest corporate deal news. The shares of Qualcomm and Intel rose by 4.6% and 6.3% respectively. Brent crude, used to price global oils, gained 12 cents to $69.64. Wholesale gasoline was little changed at $2.01 a gallon.

The Dow industrials were up 486 points, or 2.1 per cent, at 24,022. Natural gas added 3 cents to $2.62 per 1,000 cubic feet.

The gold futures grew by 0.27% to 1,353.50 United States dollars per ounce. Silver gained 10 cents to $16.68 an ounce. The euro fell to $1.2402 from $1.2455. Britain's FTSE 100 shed 0.5 percent.

In Asia, Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 gained 2.7 percent. Sydney's S&P-ASX 200 fell 0.5 percent. South Korea's Kospi edged up 0.5 percent to 2,448.42. India's Sensex rose 0.3 percent.

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