With traders reacting positively to remarks by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, stocks have moved mostly higher over the course of morning trading on Monday. The major averages have all shown strong moves to the upside on the day.
The strength on Wall Street comes as traders digest the latest comments from Bernanke, who noted that the U.S. unemployment rate has declined faster than the Fed predicted but indicated that the central bank would leave its supportive measures in place.
Health insurance and healthcare provider stocks are seeing considerable strength on the day, driving the Morgan Stanley Healthcare Payor Index and the Morgan Stanley Healthcare Provider Index up by 2.6 percent and 2.2 percent, respectively.
The strength in the healthcare sector comes as the Supreme Court begins hearing arguments regarding President Obama's landmark healthcare reform law.
Significant strength has also emerged among networking stocks, as reflected by the 1.5 percent gain being posted by the NYSE Arca Networking Index. Gold, software, and defense stocks are also posting strong gains amid broad based buying interest.
The major averages have moved roughly sideways in recent trading, hovering near their best levels of the day. The Dow is up 125.63 points or 1 percent at 13,206.36, the Nasdaq is up 34.78 points or 1.1 percent at 3,102.70 and the S&P 500 is up 13.42 points or 1 percent at 1,410.53.
by RTT Staff Writer
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