Wall Street Rallies for Second-Straight Day


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The markets zoomed higher for the second day in a row as traders grew more confident that the Fed will continue its bond-buying program for some time to come.

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Today's Markets

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 150 points, or 1%, to 14910, the S&P 500 gained 15.2 points, or 0.96%, to 1603 and the Nasdaq Composite climbed 28.3 points, or 0.85%. to 3376.

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 and Wednesday.

"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 $45.30, or 3.6%, o $1,230 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 rose 18 cents, or 0.19%, to $95.50 a barrel. Wholesale New York Habor gasoline dipped 0.25% to $2.731 a gallon.

In corporate news, General Mills (NYSE: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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