Stocks were gaining for the second straight day Wednesday, as more positive news about diplomatic progress between Russia and Ukraine emerged. Later, the Federal Reserve’s interest rate decision will steal the show in markets.
Futures for the
Dow Jones Industrial Average
rose 399 points, or 1.2%.
futures signaled it will start 1.3% in the green, and the
was poised to climb 1.8%. This comes after the Dow rose 1.8% and the other two indexes gained more than 2% Tuesday. The S&P 500 ended Monday at just over 4,170, a closing low for the year and a level at which investors have aggressively bought stocks twice.
According to multiple reports, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has said talks between the two sides were sounding “more realistic.”
Meanwhile, the price of WTI crude oil fell 0.4% to just under $97 a barrel, which is down from a multiyear peak of $130 hit earlier this month. The concern is that continued war will prompt western nations to stop buying Russian oil—the U.S. has already imposed a ban on imports—reducing the global supply. The higher oil price is adding to the already-burdensome inflation consumers have had to deal with.
So while stocks are enjoying a mini run, markets are still monitoring several items. While there may be some progress on the war front, Ukraine just launched a counteroffensive attack on Russia, signaling that the war is far from over right now.
Plus, the Federal Reserve will make its announcement this afternoon. Markets expect the central bank to lift the benchmark lending rate by a quarter of a percentage point, with the probability of a half a percentage point hike at just under 4%, according to CME Group data. But whatever the immediate decision, if the Fed indicates that more than five hikes are on the horizon, stocks could sell off, wrote Tom Essaye, founder of Sevens Report Research.
Elsewhere, retail sales rose 0.3% month-over-month in February, missing the forecast for a 0.4% increase. Markets are more likely to focus on economic data in comings months that encapsulate the full period when oil and gas prices have been elevated.
Overseas, the pan-European
rose 2.8%, and Hong Kong’s
Hang Seng Index
Traders in Asia witnessed a dramatic day after China’s top administrative authority said it would work to stabilize Chinese stock markets and boost economic growth, state-run Xinhua News Agency reported.
That spurred a big rally, with shares in some of the largest Chinese companies surging by upward of 20% as the Hang Seng notched its biggest daily gains since 2008. But the key index of Chinese stocks is still deep in correction territory, down almost 14% this year and some 40% below its all-time high close in 2018.
Here are 7 stocks on the move Wednesday:
Shares in popular U.S.-listed Chinese stocks soared, with
(ticker: BABA) up 22% in the U.S.
(JD) jumped 25%, with
(NTES) climbing 18%.
Yum China Holdings
(YUMC) stock gained 11%.
(WYNN), which sees 40% of its sales come from China according to FactSet, saw its stock gain 6.1%.
Las Vegas Sands
(LVS), which sees the majority of its sales from China, saw its shares rise 6.6%.
(SBUX) stock gained 4.8%. The company sees 12% of sales come from China, and it got an upgrade to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan. Also, current CEO Kevin Johnson is set to retire and the interim CEO will be former chief Howard Schultz.