Tech stock rally helps snap losing streak
Stocks rebounded Friday, clawing back some of the week’s steep losses, but the turbulent trading of the past few days left no doubt that the relative calm the markets enjoyed all summer had been shattered.
Major U.S. indexes ended the week down about 4 percent, their worst weekly loss in six months. An index measuring the performance of small-company stocks had its worst week since early 2016.
Big technology and consumer-focused companies led the recovery Friday after plunging the past few days. A major factor for the pullback was a sharp increase in interest rates, which can slow the economy and make bonds more attractive to investors relative to stocks.
Apple rose 3.6 percent to $222.11, and Microsoft gained 3.5 percent to $109.57. Amazon jumped 4 percent to $1,788.41. Those are the three most valuable companies in the U.S., and they suffered startling declines the past few days: on Wednesday, each took its biggest loss in more than two years. That made for a dramatic end to three months of calm on the market.
The S&P 500 index rose 38.76 points, or 1.4 percent, to 2,767.13 to end a six-day losing streak. The benchmark index tumbled 4.1 percent this week, and it’s down 5.6 percent since from its latest record high, set Sept. 20. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose as much as 414 points early on, then gave it all up and turned slightly lower. It rebounded and finished with a gain of 287.16 points, or 1.1 percent, at 25,339.99.
Small companies didn’t fare as well. The Russell 2000 index rose just 1.30 points, or 0.1 percent, to 1,546.68 to wrap up its largest loss in one week since January 2016.
U.S. automakers General Motors and Ford kept slumping. GM shed 1.6 percent to $31.79, its lowest in nearly two years. Ford, trading at its lowest in almost nine years, dipped 1.9 percent to $8.64. Both have plunged as they deal with slowing sales and steel and aluminum duties that are raising manufacturing costs.