Stocks moved mostly higher early in the session on Friday and continue to see modest strength in afternoon trading. The major averages have pulled back off their highs of the session but remain in positive territory.
Currently, the Dow is up 69.00 points or 0.2 percent at 34,569.73, the Nasdaq is up 27.43 points or 0.2 percent at 13,776.26 and the S&P 500 is up 8.50 points or 0.2 percent at 4,459.64.
The modest strength on Wall Street may partly reflect bargain hunting, as some traders pick up stocks at reduced levels following recent weakness. The uptick by the Nasdaq comes after the index closed lower for four straight sessions.
Some trades may also feel concerns about the outlook for interest rates, which contributed to the recent weakness, have been overdone.
While recent economic data has led to worries the Federal Reserve may leave rates higher for longer than previously anticipated, the central bank is still widely expected to keep rates unchanged later this month.
Overall trading activity has been somewhat subdued, however, with a lack of major U.S. economic data keeping some traders on the sidelines ahead of the release of key reports next week.
Next week will see the release of key reports on consumer and producer inflation as well as reports on retail sales, industrial production and consumer sentiment.
Energy stocks are turning in a strong performance in afternoon trading, as the price of crude oil moves back to the upside following the pullback seen on Thursday.
With crude for October delivery climbing $0.68 to $87.55 a barrel, the NYSE Arca Oil Index is up by 1.7 percent and the Philadelphia Oil Service Index is up by 1.3 percent.
Banking and software stocks are also seeing some strength on the day, while telecom stocks have moved to the downside over the course of the session.
In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region moved mostly lower during trading on Friday. Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index tumbled by 1.2 percent, while China’s Shanghai Composite Index edged down by 0.2 percent.
Meanwhile, the major European markets all moved to the upside on the day. While the German DAX Index inched up by 0.1 percent, the U.K.’s FTSE 100 Index and the French CAC 40 Index climbed by 0.5 percent and 0.6 percent, respectively.
In the bond, treasuries have pulled back near the unchanged line after seeing early strength. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is up by less than a basis point at 4.262 percent.
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