Wall Street ended a volatile week with a moderate gain Friday after better-than-expected economic data placated a market pummeled a day...
NEW YORK — Wall Street ended a volatile week with a moderate gain Friday after better-than-expected economic data placated a market pummeled a day earlier by concerns about housing and the financial sector.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 21.41 to 11,370.69, after falling more than 280 points Thursday.
Microsoft, one of the 30 Dow stocks, rose 72 cents to close at $26.16 a share. Boeing, also a Dow stock, gained $1.30 to $63.83.
Broader stock indicators also rose. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index advanced 5.22 to 1,257.76, and the Nasdaq composite index rose 30.42 to 2,310.53.
Most Read Business Stories
- FAA safety engineer goes public to slam the agency's oversight of Boeing's 737 MAX
- 55,000 in Washington state may have to pay back thousands in jobless benefits
- 1 house, 45 offers: Homebuyers in Western Washington hard-pressed as supply remains scarce
- Boeing CEO gave up millions in pay; here's what he and other top execs earned
- Jeff Bezos gets fraction of legal fees from girlfriend’s brother
Financials drifted lower again on continued worries about the health of balance sheets, while a surge in profits at Juniper Networks lifted technology stocks.
The Commerce Department reported that orders sent to factories for big-ticket manufactured goods such as cars, appliances and machinery rose by 0.8 percent in June, the strongest gain in four months and well ahead of Wall Street’s expectations. But outside demand for defense equipment, orders would have been up only modestly.
Another Commerce Department report showed that new-home sales dropped by a smaller-than-expected 0.6 percent. And there was good news about consumers, whose shyness about spending has troubled Wall Street because consumer spending accounts for more than two-thirds of U.S. economic activity. The Reuters/University of Michigan index of consumer sentiment for the first part of July came in at 61.2, while economists forecast a reading of 56.4. The reading was a slight rebound from a 28-year-low last month.
Linda Duessel, equity-market strategist at Federated Investors, said economic figures such as the durable-goods numbers are important because they reveal continued demand from abroad, which could help U.S. companies continue to rake in profits even if the U.S. economy isn’t running at full steam.
“That’s good news for market participants as we try to find a footing in the market, because we really don’t want to see our weakness leak outside the U.S.,” she said.