Big tech helps drive S&P past 4,000 mark - RTHK
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Big tech helps drive S&P past 4,000 mark

2021-04-02 HKT 04:51
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  • The bulls were on top in a strong session for Wall Street. File image: Shutterstock
    The bulls were on top in a strong session for Wall Street. File image: Shutterstock
The S&P 500 surged on Thursday to its first-ever close above the 4,000 mark, lifted by gains in Microsoft, Amazon and Alphabet, as well as optimism about a recovering US economy.

Microsoft, Amazon, Alphabet and Nvidia jumped 2 percent or more, with those and other growth stocks showing signs of awakening after lagging in recent weeks behind so-called value stocks expected to outperform as the economy recovers from the coronavirus pandemic.

Google-parent Alphabet's 3.3 percent rally left it at its highest close ever.

Data showed the number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose unexpectedly last week. However, other data showed a measure of manufacturing activity soared to its strongest level in more than 37 years in March, with employment at factories the highest since February 2018.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.52 percent to end at 33,153 points, while the S&P 500 gained 1.18 percent to 4,020. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 1.76 percent to 13,480.

With its latest record, the S&P 500 was up about 7 percent in 2021, and it has gained 80 percent from its low in March 2020.

"We’re still bullish for this year, and we think that with stimulus, with the Fed committed to being dovish, with the economy reopening due to more of the US getting vaccinated, overall you're going see corporate earnings do pretty well," said King Lip, chief investment strategist at Baker Avenue Asset Management in San Francisco.

US stock markets will close on Good Friday for the holiday.

Micron Technology jumped 4.8 percent after the chipmaker forecast fiscal third-quarter revenue above Wall Street estimates due to higher demand for memory chips, thanks to 5G smartphones and artificial intelligence software.

US-listed shares of rival Taiwan Semiconductor rose 5.5 percent after it said it will invest US$100 billion over three years to meet rising chip demand. (Reuters)