Wall Street all smiles after Powell’s appointment to the Fed

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November 23, 2021
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November 23, 2021

Wall Street all smiles after Powell’s appointment to the Fed

The New York Stock Exchange opened sharply higher on Monday, reacting with a smile to the renewal of Jerome Powell as head of the American Central Bank (Fed).

At 3:00 p.m. GMT, the Dow Jones advanced 0.69%, the Nasdaq 0.72% and the S&P 500 0.49%.

Over the past week, the Dow Jones had lost 1.4%, the S&P 500 was up 0.3% and the Nasdaq was up 1.4%.

Friday, the index of flagship stocks had dropped 0.75% to 35,602.18 points and the S&P 500 0.14% to 4,697.96 points. The Nasdaq (+ 0.40%) had crossed 16,000 points for the first time, to a new record (16,057.44 points).

The week, which is only three and a half sessions with Thanksgiving on Thursday and a cut short on Friday, promised to be rich in major news, starting with the appointment of Jerome Powell to a second term as head of the Bank. Central American (Fed).

Announced a few minutes before the opening of markets on Monday, President Joe Biden’s eagerly awaited decision clearly reinforced the good mood of the markets, already in the green in futures contracts.

“If the president renames Jerome Powell, it will be positively received,” promised, a few minutes before the announcement, Peter Cardillo of Spartan Capital Securities.

“The market should be ready for its traditional Thanksgiving rise which could extend into a year-end hike,” he promised optimistically.

Jerome Powell has chaired the powerful central bank for four years when, a centrist Republican, he was appointed to this post by Donald Trump, to succeed Janet Yellen.

Favorite in the race, his main rival was Lael Brainard, governor and located further to the left.

The rates on 10-year Treasury bills were up to 1.58% as two Fed officials in recent days have raised the possibility for the central bank to accelerate the reduction of its asset purchases.

In the long term, this would mean an increase in interest rates occurring sooner than expected.

Among the eagerly awaited indicators this week is inflation for October, according to the PCE index, the Fed’s favorite barometer, which will be published on Wednesday with consumer spending, another figure closely watched by investors.

“Until then, we will digest the report on sales of old homes for October, a speech on the economy and inflation by President Biden on Tuesday,” said Patrick O’Hare of Briefing.com.

In the background, however, remained “concerns about the rise of Covid-19 cases in Europe and the United States”, also underlined Peter Cardillo.

Bank stocks benefited from the confirmation of Jerome Powell as the head of the Fed: Goldman Sachs and Wells Fargo gained more than 2%.