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Wall Street ends choppy week with stocks higher; bond yields rebound

Flags adorn the facade of the New York Stock Exchange.
Flags adorn the facade of the New York Stock Exchange. The S&P 500 index rose 1.1% to an all-time high Friday for the second time this week.
(Associated Press)

Bond yields rebounded solidly and stock indexes notched new highs Friday as Wall Street closed out a choppy, holiday-shortened week of trading with the market’s third straight weekly gain.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 1.1% to an all-time high for the second time this week. The benchmark index more than made up for its losses a day earlier, giving it a 0.4% gain for the week. The gains were broad with about 90% of the stocks in the S&P 500 closing higher. Banks, technology companies and industrial stocks powered much of the rally.

The gains followed bursts of selling this week as bond yields fell sharply, a sign that investors might be turning cautious after a recent run of record highs for stocks.

Bond yields also reversed course Friday. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note jumped to 1.36% from 1.28% a day earlier.

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The S&P 500 index rose 48.73 points to 4,369.55. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 448.23 points, or 1.3%, to 34,870.16, also a record high. The Nasdaq composite added 142.13 points, or 1%, to end at 14,701.92; it is the tech-heavy index’s third all-time high this week.

The market rally comes as investors turn their attention toward company earnings reporting season, which kicks off next week, starting with major banks such as JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Bank of America and Wells Fargo. Analysts expect another strong quarter for Wall Street because of the improving economy and fewer Americans defaulting on loans compared with earlier in the pandemic.

Banks have been among the best-performing stocks in the S&P 500 this year. The KBW Bank Index of the 24 largest banks is up 27% this year alone, compared with the 16% gain of the S&P 500.

Investors continue to gauge the potential effect of COVID-19 variants, particularly the highly contagious Delta variant, as governments in some countries reimpose lockdowns and travel restrictions.

AP business writer Joe McDonald contributed from Beijing.


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