[Chart courtesy of MarketWatch.com]
1. Moving the Markets
Today’s trading closed with smiles on most everyone’s face in Wall Street as the Dow and S&P 500 had one of their best point gains of the year. The Dow gained 1.69%, the S&P 500 rose a whopping 2.04% and the Nasdaq rose ahead of the pack gaining 2.11%!
Markets were driven higher today by news of oil prices and the Russian ruble stabilizing, but primarily by news that the Federal Reserve is on course to raise rates for the first time since 2006 — but likely won’t hike short-term rates any earlier than the middle of next year. Needless to say, investors liked what they heard.
Policymakers released forecasts today which show they now expect the Fed’s benchmark short-term rate to rise a bit more slowly than they predicted in September. The rate is now expected to be about 1.1% at the end of 2015 and about 2.4% at the end of 2016, below their earlier estimates of 1.3% and 2.8%.
In tech news, Oracle’s (ORCL) stock got a pop today after delivering its quarterly earnings and revenue numbers that topped analyst expectations. Investors are excited because the company has turned around from a three-quarter losing streak, mostly due to its inability to catch up with other competitors in the cloud and software space.
With the broad advance, it’s no surprise that all of our 10 ETFs in the Spotlight rallied; however, no new highs were made as this rebound merely improved the standing in the “Off High” column shown in section 3.