NEW YORK, Aug. 23 (Xinhua) — U.S. stocks rose on Monday, buoyed by overall strength in the energy sector.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 215.63 points, or 0.61 percent, to 35,335.71. The S&P 500 added 37.86 points, or 0.85 percent, to 4,479.53. The Nasdaq Composite Index increased 227.99 points, or 1.55 percent, to 14,942.65.
Seven of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors ended in green, with energy up 3.77 percent, leading the gainers. Utilities slipped 1.32 percent, the worst-performing group.
U.S.-listed Chinese companies traded mostly higher with nine of the top 10 stocks by weight in the S&P U.S. Listed China 50 index ending the day on an upbeat note.
The above moves came as the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on Monday granted full approval to the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for people age 16 and older.
Investors were awaiting a key event of the U.S. Federal Reserve as its annual Jackson Hole economic policy symposium will be held later this week.
The conference will be closely watched by market participants as Fed Chairman Jerome Powell could use the occasion to signal that the Fed is on track to tapering its asset purchase program later this year.
The Fed has pledged to keep its benchmark interest rate unchanged at the record-low level of near zero, while continuing its asset purchase program at least at the current pace of 120 billion U.S. dollars per month until “substantial further progress” has been made on employment and inflation.
The minutes of the Fed’s July policy meeting published last week showed most Fed officials agreed to start tapering asset purchases this year, if the U.S. economy were to evolve broadly as they anticipated.
On the economic front, data released Monday by London-based information provider IHS Markit showed U.S. private sector expansion slowed sharply amid capacity constraints and the spread of the Delta variant.
IHS Markit Flash U.S. Composite PMI (Purchasing Managers’ Index) Output Index posted 55.4 in August, down sharply from 59.9 in July, with the Flash Services PMI Business Activity Index falling from July’s reading of 59.9 to 55.2 in August, to signal the softest rise in output since December 2020.
For the trading week ending Aug. 20, the Dow dipped 1.1 percent, while the S&P 500 and the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite slid 0.6 percent and 0.7 percent, respectively.
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