US stocks rise to fresh records on tech-fueled rally while investors sift through Fedspeak

Mar 1, 2024
  • US stocks rose on Friday, powered by a rally in tech stocks that took the Nasdaq to an intraday record.
  • Investors also parsed new Fedspeak from several central bank speakers throughout the day
  • “I don’t want to have to raise rates again,” Atlant Fed President Raphael Bostic said.

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US stocks rose on Friday, powered by a rally in tech stocks that took the Nasdaq up to a record high and helped the S&P 500 close above 5,100 for the first time ever. 

The tech-focused Nasdaq Composite rose 1.14% on Friday, continuing its ascent after closing last month at its first record high since 2021. The rally has been powered by the ongoing AI euphoria that has pushed stocks like Nvidia up 70% so far this year. On Friday, shares of Dell Technologiesrocketed 31% higher to an all-time high as investors cheered its latest earnings, which included a positive AI-related business update. 

Investors also sifted through a slew of comments from Fed officials on Friday to gauge where interest rates could be headed this year. 

Atlanta Fed president Raphael Bostic said he would like to wait for inflation to sink low enough that the Fed can avoid reversing course and switching back to rate hikes after rate cuts.

“I don’t want to have to raise rates again,” he said. “It will probably be longer before inflation gets back to our 2% target. I am willing to wait.”

Also on the inflation front, Fed Governor Adriana Kugler said that she was “cautiously optimistic” about continued disinflation taking place alongside a resilient labor market.

Meanwhile, yields on the two-year note slipped 10.8 basis points to 4.53% after Fed governor Christopher Waller said he would like the Fed to boost its share of short-term bonds.

Here’s where US indexes stood at the closing bell at 4:00 p.m. on Friday: 

Here’s what else is going on: 

In commodities, bonds, and crypto: 

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