Stocks post best day since 2015 on waning trade concerns; Microsoft soars
U.S. stocks closed sharply higher on Monday, with major indexes posting their best day in years as concerns about a potential trade war between China and the United States appeared to wane. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 671 points, or 2.9%, to 24,204. The S&P 500 gained 70 points to 2,659, a gain of 2.7%. The Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 228 points, or 3.3%, to 7,221. All three posted their biggest one-day percentage advance since August 2015. The day's gains were broad-based, with all 11 S&P 500 sectors ending in positive territory and six of them climbing more than 2% on the day. The biggest gainer of the day by far was the technology sector, which surged 4.1%, a rally that also represented its best single session since August 2015. The sector was largely supported by Microsoft Corp. , which jumped 7.6% in its best session since October 2015. Separately, Apple Inc. added 4.8%. On the downside, General Electric Co. fell 1.4% as the only one of the 30 Dow components to end negative on the day. The day's gains come after the worst week for the major indexes in two years; those losses were heavily driven by concerns over protectionist trade policy. While trade remains a primary focus, equity traders seem to be taking some cheer in reports that China and the U.S. have been holding discussions in a bid to help stave off a trade war.