S&P 500 hits record amid higher-than-expected jobless claims and continued Fed support
- The S&P 500 stretched further in record highs Thursday as the Federal Reserve signaled it will accommodate conditions for economic growth.
stockstracked on the Nasdaq Compositeled gainers.
- Jobless claims rose to 744,000, pointing to persistently high unemployment levels.
US stocks hung around record highs Thursday, with the S&P 500 hitting a new high after insight from the Federal Reserve indicated that monetary policy makers will maintain their stance in supporting growth in the world's largest economy as it continues to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.
The S&P 500 index pushed further into record territory after reaching a closing peak in the previous session. Technology stocks marched up but blue-chip stocks tracked on the
- S&P 500: 4,090.01, up 0.2%
- Dow Jones Industrial Average: 33,414.85, down 0.09% (31.41 points)
- Nasdaq Composite: 13,743.16, up 0.93%
Members of the Fed's rate-setting board expect "it would likely be some time until substantial further progress" on reaching targets of maximum employment and above-2% inflation, according to the minutes from the Federal Reserve Open Market Committee's mid-March meeting released Wednesday."FOMC members were quite positive on short-term growth prospects, but made quite clear that short-term acceleration only goes so far towards their long-term "full employment" goal, suggesting even if growth remains robust through 2Q 2021, we'll still be in a waiting pattern for Fed policy," Guy LeBas, chief fixed-income strategist at Janney Montgomery Scott, told Insider in emailed comments.
"On balance, there was nothing material in the minutes which changes my view of a reduction in [quantitative easing] beginning in early-2022 followed by a potential first rate hike in late-2022," said LeBas. "I view a 2022 QE reduction as much more likely than a 2022 rate hike," he said. "If anything, the first hike will be later and the path of hikes steeper than what the
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