April 9, 2009

U.S. stock markets surge

U.S. stock indexes soared Thursday on encouraging employment and financial news.

The U.S. Labor Department said 20,000 fewer first-time unemployment claims were filed last week compared with a week earlier. Wells Fargo Co., said it expected to post $3 billion in first-quarter profits, giving the financial sector a quick boost.

Wells Fargo shares gained 26.34 percent on the day. Bank of American rose 34.99 percent. Citigroup Inc. rose 10.74 percent.

By close, the Dow Jones industrial average gained 246.27 points, or 3.14 percent, to 8,083.38. The Standard & Poor's 500 rose 3.81 percent, 31.40 points, to 856.56. The Nasdaq composite index added 61.88 points, 3.89 percent, to 1,652.54.

On the New York Stock Exchange, 2,741 stocks advanced and 367 declined on a volume of 5.7 billion shares traded.

The benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury bond fell 17/32 to yield 2.926 percent.

The euro fell to $1.3161, compared to Wednesday's $1.3255. Against the Japanese yen, the dollar rose to 100.36 yen, compared to Wednesday's 99.64 yen.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei average gained 321.05 points to 8,916.06, up 3.74 percent.

In London, the FTSE 100 index gained 1.48 percent, 58.19 points, to 3,983.71.