Stocks around the world pushed higher on Tuesday as markets gain strength following a shaky run the last couple of weeks. Shares of technology companies, retailers and metals miners helped lead the way in the United States.
With less nervousness in the market, prices for Treasury bonds, gold and other go-to investments for turbulent times fell.
KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor’s 500 rose 20 points, or 0.8 percent, to 2,449 as of 1:45 p.m. Eastern time. If it stays up for the day, it would be the second gain in a row for the index, which recently closed out back-to-back losses the last two weeks.
The Dow Jones industrial average gained 165, or 0.8 percent, to 21,869; and the Nasdaq composite rose 75, or 1.2 percent, to 6,288.
QUIET TIMES AHEAD? Many analysts are expecting markets to drift sideways in upcoming weeks, with few market-moving events on the calendar. Central bankers from around the world will meet at the end of the week at a symposium in Jackson Hole, Wyoming, but analysts are unsure whether Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen or European Central Bank head Mario Draghi will say anything to surprise investors.
If markets do end up calming down, it would mark a return to a smooth ride for investors. The S&P 500 is up 9 percent for the year, and the climb had been a remarkably placid one until two weeks ago. It had just two days this year where it fell by 1 percent or more, before doubling its tally during the last two weeks as worries rose about political strife in Washington and abroad.
SHINY SHINY: Metals companies helped lead the way for the market. Freeport-McMoRan, the largest publicly traded copper producer, rose 43 cents, or 3 percent, to $15.17. Arconic, which sells aluminum, titanium and nickel, rose $1.08, or 4.4 percent, to $25.56. Both were among the top-performing stocks in the S&P 500.
RING IT UP: Macy’s rose 92 cents, or 4.7 percent, to $20.45 after it said an eBay executive, Hal Lawton, would become its president. Traditional retailers have been struggling to compete with online rivals, and Macy’s also said it is restructuring its organization to drive more sales and cut costs.
Shoe retailer DSW surged $3.03, or 19.3 percent, to $18.72 after it reported stronger earnings and revenue for the latest quarter than analysts had forecast. Its board also authorized a plan to buy back up to $500 million of the company’s stock.
TECH TIDE: Technology stocks in the S&P 500 rose 1.3 percent for the largest gain among the 11 sectors that make up the index. Semiconductor company Micron Technology rose 76 cents, or 2.6 percent, to $30.32.
Video-game companies were also strong. Activision Blizzard rose $2.25, or 3.6 percent, to $64.03; and Electronic Arts gained $2.46, or 2.1 percent, to $119.30.
PRICE CHOP: Homebuilder Toll Brothers fell after it cut the top end of its forecast for full-year revenue. Its stock lost $1.12, or 2.9 percent, to $37.14 despite also reporting stronger profit for the second quarter than analysts expected.
GLOBAL MARKETS: In Europe, Germany’s DAX jumped 1.4 percent, France’s CAC 40 rose 0.9 percent and the FTSE 100 gained 0.9 percent in London.
In Asia, Hong Kong’s Hang Seng climbed 0.9 percent, South Korea’s Kospi added 0.4 percent and the Nikkei 225 in Japan was virtually flat.
YIELDS: Prices for Treasurys fell, which in turn pushed up their yields. The 10-year Treasury note’s yield rose to 2.21 percent from 2.18 percent late Monday. The two-year yield edged up to 1.32 percent from 1.31 percent, and the 30-year yield climbed to 2.78 percent from 2.76 percent.
CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 109.47 Japanese yen from 108.85 yen late Friday. The euro fell to $1.1756 from $1.1813, and the British pound fell to $1.2824 from $1.2901.
COMMODITIES: Benchmark U.S. crude rose 22 cents to $47.75 per barrel. Brent crude, the international standard, gained 5 cents to $51.71 per barrel.
Natural gas fell 2 cents to $2.94 per 1,000 cubic feet, heating oil rose 1 cent to $1.59 per gallon and wholesale gasoline was flat at $1.59 per gallon.
Gold fell $5.70 to $1,291.00 per ounce, silver fell 3 cents to $16.99 per ounce and copper rose a penny to $2.99 per pound.