US stocks ended moderately higher in a slow trading session to rebound from last week’s selloff as investors digested a flurry of mixed economic reports.
In a bag of economic reports released before the bell, slightly worse than expected May consumer spending data offset better than forecast manufacturing activity for April and a growth in jobs for the same period.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended 29.69 points or 0.2% higher to close at 18,040.37 points. More than half of the Blue-chip index’s 30 components closed higher on the day.
The S&P 500 Index closed 4.35 or 0.2% higher on the day at 2111.74 points. Eight of the benchmark index’s ten main sectors finished higher led by Industrials, healthcare and technology.
The technology heavy Nasdaq Composite closed the session 12.49 points or 0.3% higher at 5082.93 points.
Trading volume was however lower than usual with investors awaiting more economic data due later this week.
“Investors are playing it cautious,” Bill Nichols, head of U.S. equities at Cantor Fitzgerald, told the Wall Street Journal.
“No one knows what a rate-tightening environment looks like after the last seven or eight years, so investors don’t want to make any big bets ahead of it.”
The stocks have in recent weeks been driven almost entirely by concern over the health of the country’s economy and the looming uncertainty over when the Federal Reserve will hike the interest rates.
“The things that seem to be driving the market today are a bounce-back from the selling and some pretty good economic data. But as the day has progressed, some of the enthusiasm has worn off since the debate continues as to when the Fed is going to raise rates,” Bucky Hellwig, senior vice president at BB&T Wealth Management in Birmingham, Alabama, told Reuters.
“The risk is that the Fed raises interest rates into a slowing economy.”
Also contributing to the strength of the markets in the background has been news over Greeks ability to repay its international lenders.
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