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Stocks little changed after their best week in 2023


The Nasdaq Composite rose 0.3 per cent, the S&P 500 added nearly 0.2 per cent, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.1 per cent

Stocks were little changed to end the trading session on Monday after recording their best week in 2023, as hopes continued to prevail that the Fed is prepared to call an end to tightening.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite rose 0.3 per cent, continuing a notable stretch of gains, while the benchmark S&P 500 added nearly 0.2 per cent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.1 per cent or nearly 35 points.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose nearly 10 bps to trade around 4.66 per cent.

The major US stock indexes surged on Friday after US jobs growth slowed more than expected and wage inflation cooled, strengthening optimism for an end to Fed interest rate hikes that persisted into the new week.

Investors will be listening out for confirmation when a number of Fed officials step up to speak this week, including two appearances by Chair Jerome Powell. Regional Fed Presidents John Williams and Raphael Bostic are among those on the list.

Some on Wall Street have warned that the optimism could be overdone and to brace for volatility in stocks. Morgan Stanley strategist Mike Wilson cautioned last week’s stock comeback appears more like a bear market rally rather than the start of a sustained rise.

In the meantime, the market still has a stream of quarterly earnings ahead, while the calendar is quiet on the economic front. Disney’s results due Wednesday are the highlight.

In commodities, oil prices climbed after top exporters Saudi Arabia and Russia confirmed last weekend that they will continue with their voluntary additional production cuts. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures, the US benchmark, increased over 1 per cent to just below $82 a barrel, while global benchmark Brent crude futures put on a little less than 1 per cent to trade below $86 a barrel.

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