The Nasdaq reached a 15-year intraday high and closed at a record peak on the best day for the US stock market this week.
First, the scoreboard:
- Dow: 18,139.76, +204.02, (1.14%)
- S&P 500: 2,122.28, +21.84, (1.04%)
- Nasdaq: 5,134.21, +69.33, (1.37%)
And now, the top stories on Thursday:
- There is “no agreement yet is in sight” between Greece and its creditors. Eurogroup president Jeroen Dijsselbloem said this in a press conference after a meeting of Eurogroup finance ministers. Greece is due to pay €1.5 billion ($US1.70 billion) to the IMF in less than two weeks, and most likely doesn’t have the funds. Today’s meeting had been considered the landmark moment preceding a serious fallout. There was a huge rally in Athens to press for a deal. After the press conference, Bloomberg reported that Dijsselbloem said Greece is headed for a Euro exit. The euro climbed to a one-month high of 1.1436 against the dollar. The Athens Stock Exchange General Index fell more than 18% to a three-year low before the meeting.
- Fitbit soared 52% above its IPO price of $US20 per share at the open on its first day of trading. The opening price valued the company at about $US6.3 billion. The company had raised its price range to $US17 – $US19 from $US14 – $US16 and the number of shares on offer, after investors showed strong demand. The average insider owns the stock at $US0.37 a share, according to CNBC. Fitbit is trading on the New York Stock Exchange with the ticker FIT.
- On Thursday we also go our final 3 pieces of major economic data for the week: Inflation rose less than expected in May. Headline consumer prices rose 0.4% month-over-month and 0.1% year-over-year. Prices were flat month-over-month, and up 1.7% year-over-year on a “core” basis. May marked the first month since February that headline inflation didn’t fall year-over-year, although the plunge in gas prices is still a factor. “We think that the brief and energy-driven deflation period in US inflation is likely behind us, and we expect inflation to gradually pick up in H2 15,” Barclays economists wrote in a client note after the release.
- Initial jobless claims fell more than expected last week. Claims for unemployment insurance fell 12,000 to 267,000, marking the 15th straight week that the number read below 300,000. The four-week moving average now stands at 276,750, down 2,000 from the previous week.
- The Philadelphia Fed‘s latest manufacturing report came in at 15.2, crushing expectations for a reading of 8.0. This was the highest reading for the measure since December. The report showed that demand for manufactured goods increased as employment expanded, and the number of firms increasing hiring exceeded the number of firms trimming staff.
- Gold and silver rallied more than 2%. Gold crossed the key $US1,200 per ounce level to around $US1,205, the highest level in three weeks. Silver climbed to as high as $US16.40 an ounce.
- The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF rallied as much as 3% to a record high. The ETF, which tracks stocks in the industry, has seen two big plunges this year, including a major correction in April. It’s up more than 50% since mid-July 2014, when Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen said biotech stock valuations “appear substantially stretched.” Some Wall Street firms including Citi have voiced concern that the industry is in a bubble.
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