USA stocks surge in best rally since March 2009

USA stocks surge in best rally since March 2009

U.S. stocks tumbled 1% on Thursday in a broad-based decline led by energy shares, giving back some of the gains from a spectacular rally a day earlier that helped the blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average surge more than 1,000 points for the first time ever.

Stock markets staged a remarkable comeback on Wednesday, erasing losses suffered during the worst Christmas Eve trading session in US history. Nasdaq rose 5.8 percent or 361 points to 6,554.

The S&P 500 index rose 21.13 points, or 0.9 percent, to 2,488.83. At its lowest, the Dow was down 611 points and the S&P off by 70. Despite Wednesday's rally, stocks are on track for their worst December since 1931, during the depths of the Great Depression.

The S&P and the Dow have fallen about 12 percent for the year, while the Nasdaq has shed 10 percent, with just four more trading sessions left to wrap up the year.

And the negative sentiment has been global: On Tuesday, the closely watched Nikkei 225 in Japan fell 5 percent.

If Wednesday's gains do not hold and slip away in the next three trading days, USA stocks could still have their worst December ever. Among big retailers, Amazon rose 9.4 percent, Kohl's 10.3 percent and Nordstrom 5.8 percent.

Markets had reacted negatively to several events coming out of the nation's capital: the partial government shutdown, the resignation of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and what was widely seen as a bungled response to the market turmoil by Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

The latest on developments in financial markets (all times local): 4:00 p.m. USA stocks are staging a furious late-afternoon rally Thursday, closing with gains after erasing a 600-point drop in the...

European markets returned to trading following the Christmas and Boxing Day holidays to trade mixed. In early afternoon, only 5 stocks in the benchmark index were higher.

The recovery in oil prices also bodes well for the Toronto Stock Exchange, which resumes trading on Thursday.

A drop in oil prices led to a 2.21% drop in the energy index, while technology and consumer discretionary stocks shed 1.54% and 1.77%, respectively.

Both the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 were recently flirting with bear territory.

Meanwhile, U.S. home price growth slowed in the month of October, according to data released Wednesday.

US stocks staged a last-minute turnaround that put the market on track to end the volatile week with a gain. JPMorgan Chase rose 1.1 percent to $97.04. Credit card company Visa climbed 7 percent, and Mastercard was up 6.7 percent.

THANKS, SANTA: Big retailers were among the gainers. Energy stocks also rebounded with a almost 10-percent rise in oil prices on December 26. Britain's FTSE 100 fell 1.5 percent.

The Dow is off 18.9 percent from its closing high, while the Nasdaq is already in bear market along with the Dow Jones Transport Average and the small-cap stocks.

The Russell 2000 is up 39.73 points, or 3.1 percent.

Mr Rodda says Wall Street is registering a solid day of activity on Thursday, with its three major indices up over 2-and-a-half % so far in the session.

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