Stocks Close Out the Week in Positive Fashion…..

U.S. stocks finished nicely higher to close out a mixed week that came on the heels of four-straight weekly gains, with earnings season continuing to paint a relatively positive picture, highlighted by Starbucks. Equities held gains as President Trump announced a short-term deal to reopen the government until February 15, while reports that the Fed could be mulling ending its balance sheet reduction measures sooner than expected seemed to underpin sentiment. Markets shrugged off Dow member Intel’s softer-than-expected revenues and guidance, as well as festering political turmoil. Treasury yields gained ground and the U.S. dollar fell. Crude oil prices and gold traded to the upside.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) rose 176 points (0.7%) to 24,729, the S&P 500 Index gained 22 points (0.9%) to 2,665, and the NASDAQ Composite rose 91 points (1.3%) to 7,165. In moderate volume, 863 million shares were traded on the NYSE and 2.4 billion shares changed hands on the NASDAQ. WTI crude oil advanced $0.56 to $53.69 per barrel and wholesale gasoline was flat at $1.40 per gallon. Elsewhere, the Bloomberg gold spot price rose $21.86 to $1,303.08 per ounce, and the Dollar Index—a comparison of the U.S. dollar to six major world currencies—dropped 0.8% to 95.76. Markets were mixed for the week, as the DJIA and the NASDAQ Composite ticked 0.1% higher, while the S&P 500 Index dipped 0.2%.

Treasuries were lower, with the yields on the 2-year and 10-year notes rising 3 basis points (bps) to 2.60% and 2.75%, respectively, while the 30-year bond rate advanced 2 bps to 3.06%. After votes on competing bills in the U.S. Senate to end the partial government shutdown failed yesterday, and LaGuardia Airport experienced a temporary ground stop, due to staffing issues, President Donald Trump announced a short-term deal to reopen the government through February 15. Negotiations on a permanent deal will proceed, with the contentious topic of border-security funding remaining elusive. Trump said federal workers will receive back pay as soon as possible and noted that lawmakers will engage in good-faith border-security negotiations, while threatening emergency declaration if no deal is reached. The economic calendar was void of data today, as releases of durable goods orders and housing starts data were delayed due to the government shutdown.

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