NEW YORK, NY – Wall Street capped a mostly quiet week of trading Friday with broad gains for stocks and more record highs for the major indexes.
Technology and health care stocks powered much of the rally. The S&P 500 notched its 10th winning week in the last 11. The benchmark index also finished with a record high for the fourth time this week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq composite also ended the week at new highs.
Momentum for stocks has been clearly upward for months, and the market is heading into what’s historically been a seasonally good period.
Rising optimism around a “Phase 1” trade deal announced a week ago between the United States and China has helped push stock indexes to records. Fears about a possible recession have also faded since the summer after the Federal Reserve cut interest rates three times, and the central bank appears set to keep them low for a long time.
“It's just a benign continuation of the year-end rally based on no compelling reasons to scare people into selling,” said Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager with Globalt Investments. “You have not a lot of reasons to sell; maybe a few reasons to buy. So, it's just a very slow, low volume drift upward.”
The S&P 500 rose 15.85 points, or 0.5%, to 3,221.22. With less than two weeks left in 2019, the S&P 500 is up 28.5% for the year.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 78.13 points, or 0.3%, to 28,455.09. The Nasdaq composite added 37.74 points, or 0.4%, to 8,924.96. The Russell 2000 index of smaller company stocks picked up 4.81 points, or 0.3%., to 1,671.90.
Roughly two stocks rose for every one that fell on the New York Stock Exchange.