In a remarkable display of market resilience, Wall Street surged forward with the Dow Jones Industrial Average leading the charge, lifted by a combination of favourable economic data and shifting interest rate expectations. Thursday’s session closed on a high note as the Dow ascended by 132 points, an uplift propelled by the exciting prospect of rate cuts in 2024 and an unexpected uptick in November’s retail sales. This surge, representative of a broader market confidence, came on the heels of the Federal Reserve’s tilt, indicating a potential softening of its monetary policy stance. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite followed suit, each notching gains and edging closer to their respective record peaks. This culmination of strong consumer spending and anticipatory financial policies paints a positive picture for the economy as it navigates through the complexities of global financial dynamics.

Key Takeaways:

  • Dow Jones Industrial Average Rises: The Dow marked a substantial gain, climbing 0.36%, a continuation of its upward trajectory following its historic breach of the 37,000 threshold.
  • S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite Make Gains: The S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite also experienced upward movements, with increases of 0.2% and 0.18% respectively, signalling a broader market upswing.
  • Retail Sales Exceed Expectations: Contrary to predictions of a 0.1% decrease, retail sales in November rose by 0.3%, indicating robust consumer spending and adding fuel to market optimism.
  • 10-Year Treasury Yield Falls: A key interest rate benchmark, the 10-year Treasury yield, dipped below 4% for the first time since August, aligning with market bets on rate cuts for 2024.
  • Solar Stocks and Moderna Shares Surge: As yields fell, solar stocks such as SunRun and Enphase saw impressive gains of 21% and 13% respectively. Biotech giant Moderna’s shares also leaped by 9% following positive trial data.
  • European Markets React Positively: European markets, including the Stoxx 600 index, responded favourably to the Fed’s signals and central bank decisions, with the index closing up by 0.9%.
  • FTSE 100 Index Climbs: The FTSE 100 Index notably ended 1.33% higher at 7648.98, marking its largest one-day point and percentage gain since early November 2023.
  • US Jobless Claims Decrease: Weekly jobless claims fell significantly by 19,000 to 202,000, underscoring the strength of the labour market.
  • Global Central Banks Maintain Rate Decisions: Both the Bank of England and the European Central Bank kept their policies unchanged, with a keen focus on future inflation trends and monetary strategies.
  • Long-term US Mortgage Rates Decline: Average long-term US mortgage rates dipped below 7%, reaching their lowest level since early August, providing a potential boost to the housing market.

FX Today: 

  • USD Shows Mixed Performance Amid Economic Indicators: The U.S. Dollar experienced a blend of responses following the release of positive retail sales data and Federal Reserve’s dovish stance. The Dollar Index (DXY) fluctuated modestly, encountering resistance around the 101.95 level. Despite these movements, the overall performance of the USD remained steady, influenced by the 10-year Treasury yields which shifted slightly below 4%.
  • EUR/USD Witnesses Significant Uptick: The EUR/USD pair saw a notable rise, climbing 1.08% to $1.0991, marking its highest level since late November. This ascent was fuelled by the European Central Bank’s decision to maintain rates, contrasting with the Fed’s pivot, and resulted in the pair’s most considerable daily gain since mid-November.
  • GBP/USD Strengthens on BoE’s Rate Decision: The GBP/USD pair surged 1.11%, briefly touching its highest point since late August at $1.2720. The Bank of England’s decision to keep interest rates unchanged while signalling a need for sustained higher rates strengthened the Pound’s position.
  • USD/JPY Dips to Four-Month Low: The USD/JPY pair experienced a decrease, falling 0.68% to 141.94, its weakest level in over four months. Market focus is now on the Bank of Japan’s upcoming policy meeting, with expectations of potential tweaks in its stance.
  • USD/CAD Pierces 1.3400 on Canadian Dollar Strength: The Canadian Dollar (CAD) extended its rally against the US Dollar (USD), pushing USD/CAD below the 1.3400 mark. This movement reflects the CAD’s resilience, supported by a rebound in crude oil prices and positive domestic employment data.
  • USD/CHF Resumes Broader Downtrend: The USD/CHF pair fell to its lowest level since late July, driven by a broader bearish sentiment. The Swiss Franc gained strength as the Swiss National Bank maintained its policy rate, combined with a decrease in inflationary pressure.
  • GBP/CHF in the Middle of Range: The GBP/CHF pair saw mixed movements, staying within a month-long range. The pair rebounded after briefly breaching the range lows and is now back in the middle, reflecting the market’s uncertainty and volatility following the Bank of England’s announcements.
  • Antipodean Currencies Make Gains: Both the AUD/USD and NZD/USD pairs responded positively to the broader market trends. The AUD/USD reached a more than four-month high at $0.6728, driven by strong domestic employment data, while the NZD/USD peaked at $0.6249, the highest since late July, despite New Zealand’s economy showing contraction in the third quarter.
  • Swiss Franc and Japanese Yen Benefit from Risk Sentiment: The Swiss Franc (USD/CHF) and Japanese Yen (USD/JPY) both made gains against the Dollar, reflecting shifts in risk sentiment and monetary policy expectations in their respective regions.
  • Gold Prices Respond to Market Dynamics: Gold prices saw a notable reaction, with a spike in response to the U.S. inflation data and the Fed’s policy outlook. The precious metal briefly pushed towards the $2,037 mark, illustrating its volatility in the current economic climate.

Market Movers:

  • Align Technology (ALGN) Leads Gains: Align Technology emerged as a top performer in the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100, surging over 12% following the announcement of an updated medical license for its Invisalign system in Canada.
  • Mining Stocks Rally on Commodity Prices: Mining stocks experienced a significant boost, with gold and copper prices jumping. Freeport McMoran and Newmont recorded gains of over 5% and 3% respectively.
  • Consumer Discretionary Stocks Advance: Retail data spurred growth in consumer discretionary stocks. Wayfair led the charge with a rise of over 13%, followed by notable gains in RH, VFC Corp, Advanced Auto Parts, and Best Buy.
  • Regional Banks Respond to Fed Outlook: Regional bank stocks like Citizens Financial Group and Regions Financial saw an uptick, with Citizens Financial Group climbing over 8%, responding positively to the Federal Reserve’s outlook on interest rate cuts.
  • Illumina (ILMN) Gains on Analyst Optimism: Illumina’s shares increased by more than 6% after Wolfe Research initiated coverage with a strong outperform rating and an optimistic price target.
  • Intel (INTC) Gains on Chip Announcement: Intel’s announcement of new chips for PCs and data centres led to a more than 4% increase in its stock, making it a leader among the Dow Jones Industrials.
  • Cardinal Health (CAH) Faces Downgrade Impact: Cardinal Health topped the list of losers in the S&P 500, dropping over 6% following a negative coverage initiation by Wells Fargo.
  • Adobe (ADBE) Declines on Forecast Concerns: Adobe’s shares fell more than 6% as its 2024 Digital Media revenue forecast fell short of market expectations.
  • Northrop Grumman (NOC) Downgraded: Northrop Grumman’s stock declined over 3% following a downgrade by Wolfe Research, citing a lower price target.


As trading concluded, global financial markets ended on a high note, shown by the Dow Jones’ impressive rise and a buoyant Wall Street. This uplift, driven by robust retail sales and the Federal Reserve’s shift towards a more accommodative stance, was mirrored in European markets and the currency domain, with notable gains in the Euro and Pound. The day’s activities were characterised by a dynamic combination of strong economic data, evolving monetary policy expectations, and diverse corporate outcomes. This complex weave of market elements shows a landscape marked by cautious confidence, signalling a period where growth ambitions are delicately balanced with the unfolding economic and policy narratives.

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