Stocks rose slightly on Thursday, adding to their strong weekly gains as expectations of looser monetary policy from the Federal Reserve grew following comments from the central bank’s top official.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded 27 points higher, while the S&P 500 gained 0.1%. The Nasdaq Composite also climbed 0.1%.
The Dow jumped more than 500 points on Tuesday, its second-best day of the year, and continued its rally on Wednesday by gaining more than 200 points. For the week, the 30-stock index is up nearly 3% through Wednesday’s close. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq are also up 2.7% and 1.6%, respectively, this week.
Powell said Tuesday Fed will keep an eye on current developments in the economy, and would do what it must to “sustain the expansion.”
In Europe, the European Central Bank kept rates unchanged on Thursday. The central bank also indicated it will likely keep rates at their current levels through at least the first half of 2020.
Still, the euro jumped 0.5% against the dollar to trade at $1.127. German bund yields also ticked higher.
Investors also monitored lingering global trade tensions, particularly the threat from President Donald Trump to impose a 5% tariff on all Mexican imports, in a political ploy criticized even by members of his own party.
Trump also tweeted that while progress between the two countries had been made on immigration, it is “not nearly enough.”
Trump ratcheted up tensions with China on Thursday, telling reporters that tariffs on Chinese goods could be raised by another $300 billion if necessary.