Stocks surge on the last day before the presidential election

The New York Stock Exchange is seen on Wall Street.
(Mark Lennihan / Associated Press)

Stocks rose sharply Monday to end a nine-day slide after the FBI said it found no new evidence to warrant charges against Hillary Clinton on the eve of the U.S. presidential election.

The market’s major indexes, including the Standard & Poor’s 500, rose 2% or more — their best daily percentage gain in eight months — as the Clinton news removed one of the key elements of uncertainty that have weighed on Wall Street for more than a week.

Stocks worldwide also rallied, as did crude oil prices and yields on U.S. Treasury securities. The U.S. dollar was mixed against other major currencies.

The S&P 500 had dropped 3% over the last nine trading sessions, the longest consecutive losing streak for the benchmark indicator in 36 years, in large part after FBI Director James B. Comey said the agency was again reviewing Clinton’s use of a private email server while she was secretary of State.


But Comey said Sunday that there was still no basis for criminal charges against the Democratic candidate, removing a major element of risk to the market’s outlook should she be elected over Republican candidate Donald Trump.

Read more: FBI clears Clinton after round-the-clock review of new emails »

The S&P 500 rose 2.2% to 2,131.52 and the blue-chip Dow Jones industrial average went up 2.1% to 18,259.60. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite index climbed 2.4% to 5,166.17.

Intel Corp., based in Santa Clara, Calif., surged 3.2% to lead the gainers in the Dow Jones industrials. Microsoft Corp. gained 2.9%. Shares of Irvine data storage firm Western Digital Corp. rose 4.8%.


Financial stocks also climbed sharply, with Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. up more than 3%.

LendingClub Corp. jumped 15.2% after the San Francisco online lender posted third-quarter results showing losses that were smaller than analysts expected and sales that were much larger.

Tuesday’s election continues to pose a huge unknown for the markets, especially with Trump vowing big changes in U.S. trade policies and complaining about Federal Reserve policies under Chairwoman Janet L. Yellen.

Despite the market’s recent setback, both the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones industrials are more than 4% above their levels at the start of the year.


One explanation is that most business and financial indicators are betting on a continuation of the current path in government, with Clinton being elected and generally extending the Obama administration’s policies, kept in check by a GOP-controlled House.

If Trump wins, analysts said, that might deliver a shock to the markets similar to the one in June caused by Britain’s vote to leave the European Union; at that time, stocks briefly suffered major losses.

Crude oil for near-term delivery rose 82 cents to $44.89 a barrel. The yield on 10-year Treasury notes jumped to 1.83% from 1.78% on Friday.



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3:35 p.m.: This article was updated to add stock prices for Western Digital and LendingClub.

1:35 p.m.: This article was updated throughout with closing prices.

8:05 a.m.: This article was updated throughout with Times staff reporting, including additional details on market prices and the FBI’s stance on Hillary Clinton.

This article was originally published at 7:05 a.m.