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US Stock Market Overview – Stocks Rally Led by Utilities and Healthcare

David Becker

US stocks surged on Wednesday. All three major averages settled in the black. All sectors in the S&P 500 index were higher, led by Utilities and Healthcare. A strong showing by Vice President Biden on Super Tuesday, helped buoy healthcare stocks. United Healthcare was up more than 10% on this election. The potential lack a socialist as the President helped the entire healthcare sector gain traction. The decline in yields finally helped the Utility sector. The ISM services came out better than expected, and so did private payrolls. Gold prices consolidated which capped the upward momentum in the miners. The VIX volatility index dropped below 40, but price action continued to reflect choppy market conditions. The 10-year yield continues to trade near 1%, as the markets continue to price in another rate cut when the Fed meets later in March. Canada joined the US as another central bank that cut rates.

Super Tuesday Buoys Biden, Bloomberg Suspends Campaign

Super Tuesday belonged to Joe Biden as several victories for Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders’s win in California narrowed the Democratic nomination contest. It’s now a two-candidate race. Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg suspended his candidacy and decided to pull the plug after spending his personal fortune proved not enough to net him any significant wins.

ISM Services Beats

The Institute of Supply Management reported that the US services sector activity accelerated to a one-year high in February. The ISM reported that its non-manufacturing activity index increased to a reading of 57.3 last month, the highest level since February 2019, from 55.5 in January. Expectations were for the index to fall to a reading of 54.9 in February.

Private Payrolls Came in Stronger than Expected

Employment excluding government jobs rose by 183,000 for the month, according to a report Wednesday from ADP topping the 155,000 expected. The job growth came during a month in which fear spread that the coronavirus strain would lead to a global economic slowdown.

This article was originally posted on FX Empire