NEW YORK, New York – Wall Street gave its nod of approval to the outcome of the midterm elections Wednesday by sending stocks sharply higher.
Technology stocks led the way with strong performances in the health sector as well.
Congress will be divided for the remaining two years of the Trump term with the Democrats in control of the House of Representatives, and Mr Trump’s party, the Republicans, retaining control of the Senate.
“I don’t think any of Trump’s agenda that he’s already accomplished gets unwound. That was the main point of concern for investors,” Robert Phipps, a director at Per Stirling Capital Management in Austin, Texas was quoted by the Reuters Thomson news agency as saying. “We’ve got a relief rally because the market got exactly what it expected.”
At the close of trading Wednesday, the Dow Jones industrials were up 545.29 points or 2.13% at 26,180.30.
The Standard and Poor’s 500 jumped 58.44 points or 2.12% to 2,813.89.
The tech-laden Nasdaq Composite did best of all, rising 194.79 points or 2.64% to 7,570.75.
The Federal Reserve assembled for its two-day monetary policy meeting, which commenced on Wednesday, but there is no rate hike expected before next month.
Forex markets had a lively day with the U.S. dollar being bought up early in the day, and then being sold off. By the close however, the changes were minimal. The euro which fell sharply, then rose strongly, was still in demand around the close but had given back a good portion of its earlier gains, to be trading around 1.1438.
The British pound was being strongly bid at 1.3134, while the Japanese yen was little changed, despite earlier strength. It finished around 113.52.
The Swiss franc was quoted at 1.00141 and the Canadian dollar at 1.3112.
The Australian and New Zealand dollars continued their recent bout of strength, surging to 0.7278 and 0.6780 respectively.
On overseas markets, the outcome of the U.S. elections was greeted with cheers, in Europe in particular which traded as the counting of votes was unfolding.
In London, the FTSE 100 rose 76.60 points or 1.09% to 7,117.28.
The German Dax firmed 94.76 points or 0.83% to 11,579.10.
The Paris-based CAC 40 added 62.76 points or 1.24% to 5,137.94.
Stocks in Asia were directionless on Wednesday, preferring to sit out the midterm elections in the U.S.
The Australian All Ordinaries closed Wednesday with a gain of 23.30 points or 0.39% at 5,982.00.
In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 was down 61.95 points or 0.28% at 22,085.80.
The Shanghai Composite closed 18.014 points or 0.68% down at 2,641.34.
The Hong Kong Hang Seng at the close was up 26.73 points or 0.10% at 26,147.69.68.