Stocks cap dismal month, quarter with rally

Tech, industrial stocks lead market to gains ahead of holiday weekend

The Dow is down 2.5 percent for the year, while the S&P 500 is off 1.2 percent. Meanwhile the Nasdaq Composite declined 59.58 points, or 0.9% to 6,949.23.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 254.69 points (1.07 per cent) to end at 24,103.11, while the broad-based S&P 500 jumped 35.87 points (1.38 per cent) to 2,640.87.

But worries that retaliatory tariffs would harm the global economy led investors to cut equity exposure to a four-month low in March and reduce holdings of us stocks to the lowest in almost two years, according to a Reuters poll.

Markets in the USA and Europe are closed Friday in observance of Good Friday, but investors will be closely watching Spotify's direct listing on the New York Stock exchange on Tuesday following the Easter holiday.

GameStop shares dropped 9.3 percent after the company provided disappointing full-year sales forecast. On the Nasdaq, 2,152 issues rose and 716 fell.

Sandven said the market's first-quarter performance has tempered expectations for the rest of the year after the market's strong start in January.

Tech, industrial stocks lead market to gains ahead of holiday weekend

Wall Street stocks finished on a positive note on Thursday (Mar 29), rallying ahead of a holiday weekend, but were down for the quarter for the first time in almost three years.

The heaviest losses occurred on the Nasdaq, as the tech-heavy index lost 0.9%, battered by more negative headlines.

"Volatility has ramped up, inflationary pressures are more prevalent, interest rates are on the cusp of change, so that presents a higher level of uncertainty and higher investor angst", Sandven said.

Technology finished at the top of today's sector standings, adding 2.2% after big losses on Tuesday and Wednesday; Microsoft, Facebook and Alphabet gained between 2.1% and 4.4% in today's trade, and Apple ended 0.8% higher, but a late bout of selling pulled the company and the broader market from its session high.

Shares in several companies that reported improved quarterly earnings or outlooks got a boost.

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