Wall Street jumps for second straight day as trader confidence slowly mounts

Wall Street jumped briefly on Friday for the second straight day, with investor confidence slowly returning after massive emergency action from central banks and governments across the world to shore up the global financial system.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose by 130 points at the opening bell, while the S&P 500 was up by just under 1 percent, before both averages began a slow descent.

The Nasdaq outperformed, notching up gains of close to 2 percent after hitting the “limit up” threshold in premarket trading, halting activity. The tech-heavy index is seeing heightened interest, with investors confident the sector can survive any economic downturn.

Trader optimism marketwise also mounted after California took a dramatic step to stem the spread of the coronavirus, implementing a mandatory “stay at home” order across the entire state.

President Donald Trump also said Thursday the U.S. was hoping to roll out a series of vaccines for the coronavirus.

However, newly released weekly data that showed a significant spike in unemployment levels also put some pressure on stocks, with 281,000 people filing claims, far higher than last week’s 211,000. Goldman Sachs analysts also released projections that show weekly jobless claims could be as high as 2 million, far higher than any weekly unemployment data on record.

The Federal Reserve announced this week it would extend its currency exchange program to other central banks around the world as the demand for dollars intensifies. That comes on top of a trillion-dollar injection of cash into the financial system and two emergency rate cuts.

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