By Markus Heitkoetter
￼And the verdict is in…
Today the Fed voted unanimously to raise rates for the first time in over 9 years.
After another wild day of trading, traders responded positively to the Fed’s decision. And in the end, the major indices were up across the board.
Although the rate hike wasn’t much of a surprise, the decision sends an important message to the world. While economies struggle overseas, the Fed is saying that the U.S. economy is strong and able to handle a rate increase. This explains the 1.5% jump in the indices, in spite of a decision that had been laid out over the last few months.
Here’s where we ended after the dust settled:
The S&P closed 1.5% higher. Up 30 points, the S&P ended at 2073.07.
The DOW finished with a 1.3% gain. Adding 224 points, the DOW closed at 17749.09.
The NASDAQ was up 1.5%. With a 76 point gain, the NASDAQ ended at 5071.13.
Today’s move brought the S&P back into positive territory for the year. The S&P is now up 0.7% YTD while the NASDAQ leads the major indices with a 7.1% YTD gain. The DOW experienced a nice move today but remains down 0.4% for the year.
While stocks celebrated the Fed’s move, Crude Oil (CL) struggled again. CL lost 4.8% and closed at $35.55 a barrel. Today’s Crude Oil Inventory release didn’t help after a surprise increase in inventory (up 4.8 million barrels vs a -.3 million forecast).
Although the “big” news this week is out of the way, we still have a lot going on.
Tomorrow brings us Philly Fed Manufacturing and Unemployment Claims at 8:30am ET. And on Friday we have “quadruple witching”, the day when stock index futures, stock index options, stock options, and single stock futures expire.