Stocks notched broad gains on Wall Street Friday as rising optimism around a "Phase 1" trade deal announced a week ago between the United States and China helped keep pushing stock indexes up. Fears about a possible recession have also faded since the summer after the Federal Reserve cut interest rates three times, and the central bank appears set to keep them low for a long time. The S&5 500 rose 15 points to 3,221; the Dow rose 78 points to 28,455; and the Nasdaq rose 37 points to 8,924.
"It's just a benign continuation of the year-end rally based on no compelling reasons to scare people into selling," Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager with Globalt Investments, tells the AP. "You have not a lot of reasons to sell; maybe a few reasons to buy. So it's just a very slow, low volume drift upward." More encouraging data arrived on Friday showing US households continue to spend amid a healthy job market. That is making up for hesitance by businesses to spend, and it's helping to keep the economy growing at a moderate pace.
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