The stock market rallied on Thursday morning as jobless claims eased, indicating tension in the labor market despite fears of a recession. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell continued his address to Congress on the second day of his testimony. Health care stocks rose.


The Nasdaq Composite Index added 1.1%, the S&P 500 rose 0.4%, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average remained unchanged. The Russell 2000 Small-Cap Index added 0.5%.

Volume fell on the NYSE and Nasdaq compared to the same time on Wednesday. (AMZN), Apple (AAPL) as well as Microsoft (ISFT) all scored over 1.5%.

US stock market review today

Index Symbol Price Profit Loss % Change
Dow Jones (0DJIA) 30488.97 +5.84 +0.02
S&P 500 (0S&P5) 3776.25 +16.36 +0.44
Nasdaq (0NDQC ) 11176.80 +123.72 +1.12
Russell 2000 (IWM) 168.61 +0.79 +0.47
IBD 50 (FFTY) 26.92 -0.35 -1.28
Last updated: 11:54 AM ET, June 23, 2022

Jobless claims fell to 229,000 from 231,000 the previous week, according to the Labor Department. Consensus save the forecast was 225,000. The latest numbers remain close to record lows.

PMI points to continued weakness

The S&P Global Purchasing Managers’ Index for June dropped to 51.2 in June from 53.6 in May. It was the weakest increase in five months, while weaker demand led to the first reduction in new orders since July 2020. The PMI Flash Report also notes that while costs remain high, factor price increases have been the slowest since April 2021.

Powell testifies before the House Financial Services Committee today. On Wednesday, Powell told the Senate that the Fed wants to see concrete evidence of lower inflation. He also acknowledged that further rate hikes could lead to a recession, but said the US economy is “strong” and can handle further rate hikes.

Meanwhile, the average rate on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose to 5.81%, the highest level since November 2008, Freddie Mac said Thursday.

The 10-year Treasury yield fell 11 basis points to 3.04%. The price of crude oil in the US remained virtually unchanged at $106.18 per barrel.

Healthcare stocks lead the stock market

Healthcare stocks have been one of the leading sectors in the S&P, along with other inflation-resistant sectors such as utilities and consumer goods stocks. Healthcare SPDR ETF (XLV) gained 1.6% on Thursday.

Merck (RTOs) jumped 1.4% back into its buying range at 89.58 buying points at the cup-and-handle level. Merck has retraced its 50-day line, which is bullish, but the break at 89.58 failed. UnitedHealth (UNH) added nearly 2% at the pace of a three-day rally. The stock just regained its 200-day line on Tuesday and returned to its 50-day line on Thursday.

Johnson and Johnson (JNJ) also jumped above its 50-day mark, gaining 1.3%. The J&J Relative Strength Line has reached a new high, indicating the strength of the price at the moment. The stock is still below the 186.79 buy point. health care provider Humana (HUM) added 0.8% and appears to be forming a flat base with a buy point at 469.44.

FedEx (FDX) fell on Thursday as the company prepares to report its fiscal fourth quarter late on Thursday, shortly after taking shareholder-friendly steps and signaling a change in strategy. FedEx shares fell on Wednesday but rose more than 11% last week. It retests the resistance of the 200-day moving average.

IBD 50 Drops, Chinese electric vehicle manufacturers shine

Innovator IBD 50 ETF (FFTY) fell by 2%, nullifying previous gains.

funko (FNCO) led by a 10% gap to new highs. JPMorgan Chase upgraded the collectibles maker from neutral to overweight and raised its price target to 28 from 25.

The action of Chinese electric vehicles continued. Xpeng (XPEV) jumped 5% and posted its sixth weekly gain in the past seven weeks.

Lee Auto (LI), which recently released its L9 SUV model, climbed more than 7%, hitting a December 1 high of 37.45.

Follow Michael Molinski on Twitter @IMmolinsky

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