Business

Dow up 4.9% as US stocks end volatile session much higher

Wall Street stocks finished a topsy-turvy session sharply higher Tuesday in anticipation of US stimulus measures as oil prices bounced.

Agence France-Presse

Wall Street stocks finished a topsy-turvy session sharply higher Tuesday in anticipation of US stimulus measures as oil prices bounced.

A day after suffering its worst decline in more than 11 years, the Dow Jones Industrial Average piled on more than 1,150 points, or 4.9 percent, to reach 25,018.16.

The broad-based S&P 500 also jumped 4.9 percent to 2,882.23, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index gained 5.0 percent to 8,344.25.

Analysts expect the volatility to continue in light of uncertainty of how much the virus will spread in the United States, the extent it further dampens activity in the world’s biggest economy and the robustness of the US policy response.

“I don’t think everyone is going to go out today fully confident that the bottom is in,” said Briefing.com analyst Patrick O’Hare.

The market “is sniffing something coming down the pike,” O’Hare said of an expected government stimulus, before adding that the details were still hazy.

US President Donald Trump said in a midday appearance at the White House that he plans to provide assistance to airlines and cruise companies, two especially hard-hit industries, boosting equities in both those sectors.

There were also reports in US media Patrick O’Hare that Trump is considering freezing payroll taxes on workers and offering some form of relief to US shale producers, which face significant challenges after a brutal drop in oil prices.

Analysts said Tuesday’s rally was not surprising given market weakness over the last few weeks, especially Monday’s rout.

They also pointed to strengthened investor sentiment following a significant jump in oil prices and a bounce in US Treasury yields from all-time lows.

Key gainers included petroleum producers such as Exxon Mobil and Chevron, which won 2.7 percent and 5.3 percent respectively.

Another oil company, the midsized Occidental Petroleum seen as vulnerable to the petroleum downturn, jumped 14.5 percent even as it slashed its dividend and cut its capital budget.

American Airlines and United Airlines both soared more than 12 percent while cruise company Carnival piled on 10.5 percent.

Large banks including Bank of America and JPMorgan Chase surged around eight percent.

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