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U.S. Stocks Inch Higher in Shortened Session to Kick Off Second Half


4:21 pm ET July 3, 2023 Editor's Picks

By Hannah Miao

a market rally to start the year U.S. stocks edged higher in a shortened trading session Monday, as investors geared up for the second half of 2023 following a market rally to start the year.

The S&P 500 added 0.1%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained roughly 10 points, or less than 0.1%. The Nasdaq Composite rose 0.2%.

an expectation-defying first-half performance The stock market is coming off an artificial-intelligence craze an expectation-defying first-half performance, with all three major U.S. indexes logging gains despite concerns about the economy. The Nasdaq recorded its best start to the year since the 1980s, as an artificial-intelligence craze swept through markets and boosted megacap tech shares. The S&P 500 finished the first half up 16%.

“There are not a lot of participants today and volume is low, but I think people are celebrating the fact that we just rocked June,” said Jeff Kilburg, founder and chief executive of KKM Financial. “Investors really started the fireworks show early last Friday.”

more likely to rise in the second half After a strong first half, the S&P 500 is historically more likely to rise in the second half and tends to notch bigger advances, according to a CFRA analysis. The S&P 500 has gained an average of 4.2% during all second halves since 1945, rising 69% of the time. When the S&P 500 is coming off a first-half gain of 10% or more, the broad index on average adds 8% in the second half and moves higher 82% of the time, according to CFRA.

U.S. markets closed early Monday for the Independence Day holiday and will remain closed Tuesday.

record quarterly sales Electric-vehicle stocks jumped Monday after Tesla posted that topped expectations record quarterly sales. Shares of Tesla rose 6.9%, their best one-day gain since March. Rivian Automotive climbed 17% after it reported EV deliveries that topped expectations, its largest percentage increase since November 2022. Lucid Group gained 7.3%.

In economic data, the Institute for Supply Management’s manufacturing index slipped to 46 in June, contracting for an eighth consecutive month.

“It is a give and take between how much the economy is softening and how much that might preclude the Fed from further hiking interest rates,” said Russell Price, chief economist at Ameriprise Financial.

On Wednesday, minutes from the Federal Reserve’s June meeting will be released, offering insights into central-bank officials’ approach to interest rates. That will be followed Friday with the June jobs report, which economists expect to show continued resilience in the labor market.

In the bond market, the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury yield rose to 3.856%, from 3.818% Friday.

Elsewhere, Brent crude fell 1% to $74.65 a barrel after Russia’s Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said his country would cut oil exports in August. Saudi Arabia will also extend its supply cuts through next month.

coming trip to China Overseas, Asian stock indexes gained, fueled by optimism over Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen’s coming trip to China. The Shanghai Composite rose 1.3%, its largest gain in nearly two months. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng gained 2.1%. Japan’s Nikkei 225 rose 1.7%.

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