On Thursday, U.S. stocks were boosted by gains in technology and banking shares and a nice push came from the Republicans’ tax code overhaul getting its final votes in Congress before the end of the year.
On Wednesday, Republicans in the Senate and the House of Representatives agreed on a final tax legislation that cuts the corporate tax rate from 35 to 21 percent. A final bill could be formally revealed on Friday, with conclusive votes anticipated by next week in both chambers.
“We have a pretty positive background, investors are focused on the tax deal that they are closed to an agreement between the House and the Senate,” said Scott Brown, chief economist, adding, “It will take some time to go through the details, what that means for specific companies but it’s consistent with the general positive tone”.
At 9:40 a.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average grew 0.29 percent to 24,655.57, on target to record gains for the sixth day in a row. The S&P 500 gained 0.12 percent or 3.14 points to 2,665.99 and the Nasdaq Composite gained 0.13 percent or 9.26 points at 6,885.06.
Walt Disney Co closed a deal to acquire film, television and international businesses from Rupert Murdoch’s Twenty-First Century Fox for $52.4 billion. Disney’s shares gained 1.77 percent and Fox’s share slightly gained.
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Shares of big banks recovered early from an early decline following the Federal Reserve decision to raise rates by 25 basis points and keeping an unchanged outlook for 2018 and 2019. Goldman Sachs, JPMorgan, Wells Fargo and Bank of America gained between 0.45 percent and 0.65 percent, driving up the S&P financial index 0.22 percent.
Amazon and Alphabet increased 0.55 percent and 0.9 percent respectively, responsible to the largest advancement of the S&P and the Nasdaq.
Data revealed that U.S. retail sales increased by more than expected last month as the holiday shopping season begun, showing sustained strength in the U.S. economy. Retail sales rose 0.8 percent in November.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 1,295 to 1,244. On the Nasdaq, 1,265 issues gained and 1,100 dropped.