U.S. stocks charged sharply higher Tuesday as Wall Street built on momentum from a broad market rally that kicked off the month and quarter earlier this week.
[Click here to read what’s moving markets on Wednesday, Oct. 5]
The benchmark S&P 500 surged 3%, its largest two-day climb since April 2020 — with the strongest daily breadth reading since late 2018, per data from Bespoke Investment Group. The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 826 points, or 2.8%, for its second straight day of gains of more than 700 points. The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite soared 3.2%.
All eyes were on Elon Musk’s charade with Twitter (TWTR) Tuesday after Bloomberg reported the Tesla (TSLA) CEO agreed to move forward with his $44 billion deal to buy the social media platform. Shares of Twitter spiked 12% immediately following the news before trading was temporarily halted — and they closed up over 22% after trading resumed. Musk confidentially filed a letter with the Delaware Chancery Court Monday night to proceed with the acquisition, days before he was expected to be deposed as part of Twitter’s lawsuit.
“We received the letter from the Musk parties which they have filed with the SEC,” Twitter said in a statement Tuesday afternoon. “The intention of the company is to close the transaction at $54.20 per share.”
As stocks soared broadly, investors cheered on a fresh labor market reading that showed U.S. job openings slid by the most in nearly two and a half years in August — a welcome sign for Federal Reserve officials trying to tamp down outsized labor demand in the fight against inflation. The Labor Department said in its monthly Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) that job openings dropped 1.1 million to 10.1 million on the last business day of August.
Bonds rallied alongside stocks on Tuesday, with Treasury yields falling for a second straight day. The benchmark U.S. 10-year note tumbled to around 3.6% after topping a 2008 high of 4% last week. The U.S. dollar index also fell lower.
Equity markets kicked off the month on a high note Monday after an ugly September for the major averages. During the previous session, the S&P 500 soared 2.6% in its best day since July, the Dow rose 2.7% to mark its largest one-day gain since June, and the technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite gained 2.3%.
Nicholas Colas of DataTrek Research points out that the S&P 500 rarely rallies by over 2% in non-stressed market conditions, suggesting that Monday’s bounce was a sign of “fragility, not strength.” Between 2013 and 2019, for example, there were fewer than four such days in every year, while 2022 has had 14 so far.
“History strongly suggests that Monday’s 2.6% S&P rally is neither healthy nor a sign that the index has troughed,” Cola said, adding that reducing outsized volatility of the sort we have been seeing this year requires a shift by policymakers. “Markets have been trying to predict a turning point for Fed policy for months now, with as-yet little success given the ongoing strength in U.S. labor markets and still-high inflation.”
A gauge of U.S. manufacturing from the Institute for Supply Management (ISM) on Monday showed activity declined to the lowest since May 2020 – a contraction that stoked some optimism around a dovish Federal Reserve pivot. And adding to hopes central bankers may back off aggressive monetary intervention was a warning from a United Nations agency that policymakers may induce a global recession and a period of prolonged stagnation if they proceed with aggressive rate increases.
“Excessive monetary tightening could usher in a period of stagnation and economic instability,” the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) said in a statement.
Elsewhere on the corporate side, shares of Rivian (RIVN) rallied nearly 14% after the company reiterated it was still on track to produce 25,000 electric vehicles this year, affirming its previous guidance.
Poshmark (POSH) stock jumped 13% on news the second-hand fashion retailer is set to be acquired by South Korean internet giant Naver Corp. in a deal valued at $1.2 billion.
Oil also extended Monday’s gains after a report OPEC+ is mulling a hefty production cut. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) and Brent crude oil futures each rose more than 3% to $86.44 and $91.86 per barrel, respectively.
Alexandra Semenova is a reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @alexandraandnyc
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