Stocks remain mostly positive in mid-day trading after showing an early move to the upside. With the gains on the day, the major averages are extending the strong upward move seen in the previous session.
Currently, the major averages are all in positive territory, although the tech-heavy Nasdaq is outperforming. While the Nasdaq is up 160.70 points or 1.5 percent at 11,217.35, the S&P 500 is up 30.17 points or 0.9 percent at 3,413.71 and the Dow is up 109.66 points or 0.4 percent at 28,102.99.
Technology stocks have helped to lead the markets higher once again, with big-name companies like Tesla (TSLA), Netflix (NFLX), Oracle (ORCL) and Facebook (FB) posting standout gains.
Apple (AAPL), which has been a key driver of the markets in recent sessions, has pulled back off its highs of the session is currently up by 1.5 percent.
The tech sector is extending yesterday’s rebound after seeing considerable weakness last week, although the Nasdaq remains well off its recent record highs.
The strength on Wall Street also comes on the heels of upbeat Chinese economic data, as the country’s industrial production and retail sales increased in August from a year ago and beat expectations.
Nonetheless, trading activity appears somewhat subdued ahead of the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy announcement on Wednesday.
The Fed is widely expected to leave interest rates unchanged, but traders are likely to pay close attention to any tweaks to the accompanying statement. The central bank’s latest economic projections may also attract attention.
Meanwhile, traders have largely shrugged off a report from the Fed showing growth in U.S. industrial production slowed by much more than expected in the month of August.
The Fed said industrial production climbed by 0.4 percent in August after soaring by an upwardly revised 3.5 percent in July.
Economists had expected production to jump by 1.0 percent compared to the 3.0 percent spike originally reported for the previous month.
Production increased for the fourth consecutive month but remains 7.3 percent below its pre-pandemic February level.
“We are vigilant that future progress toward a full recovery in the industrial sector will be slow and uneven as a health solution remains out of reach and fiscal relief fades,” said Oren Klachkin, Lead U.S. Economist at Oxford Economics.
“While the travails are comparatively less severe than in certain services sectors, industrial production risks remain heavily tilted to the downside,” he added.
A separate report from the Labor Department showed another notable increase in U.S. import prices in the month of August, with prices jumping by more than expected.
Semiconductor stocks are turning in some of the market’s best performances in mid-day trading, resulting in a 1.8 percent jump by the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index.
Significant strength also remains visible among utilities stocks, as reflected by the 1.8 percent advance by the Dow Jones Utilities Average. The average is on pace to end the session at its best closing level in a month.
Steel stocks have also shown a strong move to the upside on the day, driving the NYSE Arca Steel Index up by 1.6 percent to its best intraday level in well over six months.
Software, oil service, and commercial real estate stocks are also seeing considerable strength, while financial stocks continue to buck the uptrend.
In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region turned in a mixed performance during trading on Tuesday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index fell by 0.4 percent, while China’s Shanghai Composite Index rose by 0.5 percent.
Meanwhile, the major European markets all moved to the upside on the day. While the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index surged up by 1.3 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the German DAX Index rose by 0.3 percent and 0.2 percent, respectively.
In the bond market, treasuries have moved modestly lower over the course of the session. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is up by 1.4 basis points at 0.685 percent.
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