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Overnight Markets: Dow Jones, S&P 500 close at records

Overnight Markets: Dow Jones, S&P 500 close at records

US stocks closed higher on Thursday, with both the Dow Jones and the S&P 500 setting records, led by technology stocks in a broad-based rally as strong economic data helped to alleviate trade worries.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 251 points, or 0.95%, to 26,657, the S&P 500 gained 23 points, or 0.78%, to 2,931 and the Nasdaq Composite added 78 points, or 0.98%, to 8,028.

Blue chips helped to fuel the rally after the latest economic data helped to offset some of the adverse impact of uncertainty surrounding trade policy.

First-time jobless claims fell by 3,000 last week, dropping to their lowest level since November 1969. Separately, the Philadelphia Fed manufacturing index jumped more than expected in September, rising to 22.9 from 11.9 in the previous month.

Trade sentiment was further boosted as the dollar index fell to its lowest in more than ten weeks. A weaker dollar supports US exports.

Tech stocks lead all three major US indexes higher, with Microsoft Corp and Apple Inc surging 1.7% and 0.8%, respectively. Netflix fell 0.44%, Facebook added 1.82%, while Amazon.com gained 0.93%. Google parent Alphabet surged 1.47%.

Elsewhere, Nike added 1.11% after a research revealed the company sold out of 61% more merchandise since the appearance of the ad campaign featuring NFL player Colin Kaepernick.

Under Armour surged 6.61% as the sportswear company announced it was cutting 3% of its workforce as part of its turnaround scheme.

Shares of Canadian cannabis company Tilray fell 18% following an extremely volatile patch of trading.

Defense stocks, including Northrop Grumman Corp, Lockheed Martin Corp and Raytheon Co were down after the US said it was ready to resume talks with North Korea after Pyongyang pledged to denuclearise by 2021.

General Electric Co slipped 3.11% after reporting a problem in its newest line of natural gas-fired turbines, prompting JP Morgan to lower its price target.

In Asia, shares were trading in positive territory on Friday in morning session, following record highs on Wall Street overnight.

Japan's Nikkei 225 advanced by 0.57%. South Korea's Kospi also saw gains, trading up by 0.21%. In Australia, the ASX 200 rose by 0.45%.

In China, the Shanghai Composite Index fell 0.23%, while Hong Kong’s Hang Seng Index added 0.26%.

 

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