S&P 500 Hits New Record; U.S. Oil Reaches 16-Month High; U.S. Dollar and Euro Rise on Yen

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S&P 500 Hits New Record (Bloomberg)

The S&P reached a new record Thursday, as a second day of Congressional testimony from Ben Bernanke was followed by a decrease in jobless claims and a stock market rally. “The underlying concept of what Bernanke is trying to accomplish is taking hold in the marketplace, and that’s a good thing,” Rick Fier, director of equity trading at Conifer Securities LLC in New York, said. “The market gets the idea that a tapering is coming, the economy is improving and rates are still going to be low for a time. The initial jobless claims were better than expected. Earnings are coming in OK. All in all it’s hard not to be bullish on the market here.”

U.S. Oil Reaches 16-Month High (CNBC)

U.S. Oil Prices surpassed $108 Thursday to reach a 16 month high, supported by a drop in jobless claims and rising U.S. stock indices. “The economy seems to be rebounding, and a few signals suggest we’re coming out of the recent trough,” said Richard Hastings, macro strategist at Global Hunter Securities. “There’s a little more pricing power in the economy, and a variety of different signals suggest the economy is perking up.”

U.S. Dollar and Euro Rise on Yen (Reuters)

The Dollar and the Euro gained on the Yen Thursday, as Japanese investors grew confident that Prime Minister Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party would be victorious in July’s election. “Anything that will strengthen Abe’s position will be positive for the Nikkei and dollar/yen,” said Beat Siegenthaler, currency strategist at UBS. “The yen has not been the focus of late, but this could embolden investors and have the potential to trigger weakness.”

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