Market Rally Continues on Banking, Inflation Optimism

Table showing performance of major U.S. financial indexes on March 30, 2023

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Key Takeaways

  • U.S. stocks posted a second straight day of gains on March 30, 2023, with increasing confidence in the banking sector and optimism about interest rates.
  • The technology sector contributed to the positive day, with the Nasdaq's gains of 0.73% leading the three major equities indexes.
  • Regional bank stocks lost ground following a proposal for more stringent rules to oversee midsized banks.

The rally for U.S. equities continued as fears of a banking sector meltdown eased and on optimism that tomorrow's key inflation report may convince the Federal Reserve that it can pull back on raising interest rates to bring down soaring prices.

As was the case on Wednesday, the tech sector, especially semiconductor stocks, helped drive Thursday's gains. Intel (INTC) was the best-performing stock in the Dow for the second day in a row. Shares of On Semiconductor (ON), Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), and Nvidia (NVDA) also rose. Amazon (AMZN), Apple (AAPL), Meta Platforms (META), and Microsoft (MSFT) shares increased 1%.

Paycom Software (PAYC) shares jumped on an analyst upgrade, and upgrades also lifted shares of Walmart (WMT), Carnival Corporation (CCL), Philip Morris International (PM), and Fluence Energy (FLNC).

Strong quarterly results sent shares of electric vehicle (EV) charging station maker EVgo (EVGO) up 22%. Shares of solar power equipment manufacturer SolarEdge Technologies (SEDG) moved higher.

Tougher Banking Rules

Regional banks dominated the list of worst-performing stocks in the S&P 500 as the White House proposed tougher rules on mid-sized banks following the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank. Shares of First Republic Bank (FRC), Zions Bancorporation (ZION), KeyCorp (KEY), Comerica (CMA), and M&T Bank (MTB) were among the decliners. Shares of Charles Schwab (SCHW) dropped on an analyst downgrade. Wells Fargo (WFC) shares were lower after regulators fined the bank for violating U.S. sanctions.

Bed Bath & Beyond (BBBY) shares sank to an all-time low as the struggling retailer announced a new stock sale and warned that, if it didn't succeed, the company could face bankruptcy. Match Group (MTCH) shares tumbled after a class action lawsuit was filed involving its dating app Tinder. Shares of Alphabet (GOOGL) lost ground.

Oil and gold futures climbed. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell. The U.S. dollar dipped against the euro, pound, and yen. Prices for most major cryptocurrencies were in the red.

Table showing the S&P 500 stocks with the biggest gains and losses on March 30, 2023

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