Wall Street Rallies for Second Day

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The markets extended the previous session's rally as traders continued capitalizing on buying opportunities despite a batch of disappointing economic data.

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As of 3:18 p.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 173 points, or 1.2%, to 14933, the S&P 500 gained 18 points, or 1.1%, to 1606 and the Nasdaq Composite climbed 34.9 points, or 1%. to 3389.

Wall Street is getting its mojo back. At least for now. 

After a brutal week, and a tough session on Monday, the markets posted big gains Tuesday. With futures in the green on Wednesday, the broad-market averages were poised to extend those gains in early trading. 

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"While momentum could see the sell-off intensify in the near term, the pull-back should provide attractive entry points for risk assets," David Folkerts-Landau, chief economist at Deutsche Bank wrote to clients. "We continue to see long-term upside for equities as the global recovery gains momentum and expect the S&P 500 could be 25% higher by end-2015." 

On the economic front, the Commerce Department said the U.S. economy grew at an annualized rate of 1.8% in the first quarter, down from a previous estimate of 2.4%. Economists expected the economy to expand at a rate of 2.4% in the first three months of the year.

Market participants also paid close attention to public comments from Richmond Federal Reserve President Jeffrey Lacker. Lacker said the central bank is not "anywhere near" paring back its vast bond-buying program, according to news reports. 

Elsewhere, gold prices tumbled to their lowest level since August 2010. The benchmark contract skidded lower by $46.40, or 3.6%, o $1,229 a troy ounce. 

"Despite the recent calm in sentiment, price action in gold ... provides a tangible signal that Fed tapering concerns persist," analysts at Nomura wrote to clients. 

Oil fell 17 cents, or 0.14%, to $95.18 a barrel. Wholesale New York Habor gasoline dipped 0.31% to $2,729 a troy ounce. 

In corporate news, General Mills (GIS) posted quarterly profits that matched expectations, but a full-year outlook that missed the Street's expectations. 

Foreign Markets

The Euro Stoxx 50 rallied 2.2% to 2600, the English FTSE 100 jumped 1% to 6165 and the German DAX climbed 1.7% to 7942. 

In Asia, the Japanese Nikkei 225 sold off by 1% to 12834, and the Chinese Hang Seng soared 2.4% to 20339. 


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