After moving mostly higher over the course of the previous session, stocks saw some further upside during trading on Wednesday. The continued strength on Wall Street came as traders reacted positively to a batch of relatively upbeat U.S. economic data.
Much of the strength on Wall Street stemmed from the release of separate reports showing bigger than expected increases in durable goods orders and pending home sales.
While strength was visible in a variety of sectors, natural gas stocks posted particularly strong gains, driving the NYSE Arca Natural Gas Index up by 3.8 percent. Cabot Oil & Gas (COG) and QEP Resources (QEP) turned in two of the sector's best performances.
Significant strength was also visible among housing stocks, which benefited from the better than expected pending home sales report. The Philadelphia Housing Sector Index surged up by 3 percent, with Lennar (LEN) posting a notable gain after reporting better than expected quarterly results.
Oil service stocks also saw considerable strength, moving higher along with the price of crude oil. With crude for August delivery climbing $0.85 to $80.21 a barrel, the Philadelphia Oil Service Index advanced by 2.9 percent.
Healthcare provider, financial, networking, and computer hardware stocks also posted strong gains, reflecting broad based buying interest.
The major averages ended the day firmly in positive territory, not far off their highs for the session. The Dow rose 92.34 points or 0.7 percent to 12,627.01, the Nasdaq climbed 21.26 points or 0.7 percent to 2,875.32 and the S&P 500 advanced 11.86 points or 0.9 percent to 1,331.85.
by RTT Staff Writer
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