US stock market update: S&P 500 hits 30th record of 2024 - Hindustan Times
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US stock market update: S&P 500 hits 30th record of 2024

Bloomberg |
Jun 18, 2024 07:31 AM IST

The S&P 500 hit its 30th record this year, defying concerns about narrow breadth that could make the market more vulnerable to surprises.

A rally in several large technology companies drove stocks to all-time highs, with some prominent Wall Street strategists rushing to boost their targets even as many hedge funds grow increasingly cautious.

A general view of Wall Street in New York.(AP)
A general view of Wall Street in New York.(AP)

The S&P 500 hit its 30th record this year, defying concerns about narrow breadth that could make the market more vulnerable to surprises. As traders geared up for retail-sales data and a slew of Federal Reserve speakers, Treasuries fell amid a flurry of high-grade corporate bond sales that exceeded $21 billion, led by Home Depot Inc. That’s ahead of Wednesday’s holiday.

Optimism over a resilient economy, improving corporate earnings and the potential start of rate cuts have pushed equities up about 15% this year, with ebbing inflation and the artificial-intelligence fervor also propeling equities higher.

“We believe the S&P 500 can reach 6,000 by year-end as the combination of better earnings and one or two rate cuts is like a turbo booster for stock prices,” said James Demmert at Main Street Research. “The Fed may not need to cut rates this year — but if they do, it will be even more bullish for equities, particularly tech.”

Read more: Government considering income tax rate cut to boost consumption: Budget 2024

The S&P 500 topped 5,470, with Tesla Inc. and Apple Inc. leading gains in megacaps. Nvidia Corp. edged lower. The Nasdaq 100 came closer to the 20,000 mark. Micron Technology Inc. rose to a record as some firms raised their targets. Broadcom Inc. jumped over 5%. Activist investor Starboard Value said it’s built a stake in Autodesk Inc. valued at more than $500 million.

French stocks rebounded after last week’s tumble. Yet the Stoxx Europe 600 Index was little changed as Citigroup Inc. downgraded the region’s equities, citing “heightened political risks” among other reasons.

Gains in the shares of American technology giants are likely to keep pushing the S&P 500 to new highs, says Citigroup Inc.’s Scott Chronert.

The bank’s US equity strategist boosted his year-end forecast for the stock benchmark on Monday, to 5,600 from 5,100. He cited continued strength in the so-called Magnificent Seven stocks and expectations for earnings growth to extend to other S&P 500 companies.

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