July 23, 2024

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U.S. Stocks Close Narrowly Mixed Ahead Of Christmas Weekend

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After an early move to the upside, stocks fluctuated over the course of the trading session on Friday before eventually ending the session narrowly mixed. The Nasdaq and the S&P 500 closed modestly higher, while the narrower Dow edged slightly lower.

While the Dow slipped 18.38 points or 0.1 percent to 37,385.97, the Nasdaq rose 29.11 points or 0.2 percent to 14,992.97 and the S&P 500 crept up 7.88 points or 0.2 percent to 4,754.63.

Despite the mixed performance on the day, the major averages all moved higher for the week. The Nasdaq jumped by 1.2 percent, the S&P 500 advanced by 0.8 percent and the Dow edged up by 0.2 percent.

Stocks initially benefited from the release of tamer-than-expected U.S. inflation data, but other upbeat economic data led to some uncertainty about the outlook for interest rates.

The Commerce Department released a highly anticipated report showing the annual rate of consumer price growth decelerated to 2.6 percent in November from a downwardly revised 2.9 percent in October.

Economists had expected the pace of price growth to slow to 2.8 percent from the 3.0 percent originally reported for the previous month.

The annual rate of growth by core consumer prices, which exclude food and energy prices, also slowed to 3.2 percent in November from a downwardly revised 3.4 percent in October.

Economists had expected core consumer price growth to decelerate to 3.3 percent from the 3.5 percent originally reported for the previous month.

The readings on inflation, which are said to be preferred by the Federal Reserve, were included in the Commerce Department’s report on personal income and spending.

The bigger than expected slowdown in consumer price growth added to optimism the Fed is poised to pivot to cutting interest rates early next year.

Meanwhile, the Commerce Department released a separate report showing new orders for U.S. manufactured durable goods surged by much more than expected in the month of November.

The report said durable goods orders…

2023-12-22 16:16:48

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