Stocks closed higher on Wall Street Wednesday, extending the market's gains into a third day on hopes for a coming economic revival as larger swaths of the country relax stay-at-home mandates imposed due to the coronavirus pandemic and clear the way for more businesses to reopen, the AP reports. Despite a choppy day of trading, the S&P 500 gained 1.5% and finished above the 3,000-point mark for the first time since early March. The Dow Jones Industrial Average crossed above 25,000 points, where it hasn't closed since March. Financial, industrial, and health care stocks accounted for a big slice of the gains. Department store chains, which took some of the market's worst losses earlier this year, surged amid optimism that life can inch back toward normal.
"Today is a little bit of a follow-through from yesterday," said Bill Northey, senior investment director at US Bank Wealth Management. "This is optimism about the reopening of the US economy and, really, the global economy." The S&P 500 index rose 44.36 points to 3,036.13. The index had been down 0.7% before bouncing back toward the end of the day. The Dow gained 553.16 points, or 2.2%, to 25,548.27. The Nasdaq composite also recovered from an early slide, adding 72.14 points, or 0.8%, to 9,412.36. Small company stocks, which have lagged the broader market this year, were big gainers. Banks were also stronger on hopes that business reopenings could limit the wave of loan defaults that investors had been worrying about.
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