The overnight recovery in Asian and European stocks appeared to put investors at ease on Thursday as the 5.34 percent move higher in the Chinese Shanghai Composite and 3.18 percent gains in the German DAX brought money back into U.S. equities.
Stocks bullishly forged higher on Thursday for a second day in a row as some investors used the recent decline in prices as a buying opportunity. Though stock prices swooned two hours before the market’s close, investors demonstrated their resiliency and determination in the last hour of trading, recovering the intraday losses and closing near the highs of the day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 2.27 percent and the Nasdaq Composite rose 2.45 percent on the day.
Except for gold and wheat, most commodities were higher with energy and industrial metals leading the way. Crude oil experienced the largest daily gain since March 2009 on Thursday, with the S&P GSCI Crude Oil index rallying 10.26 percent and recouping its losses over the last five trading days.
Oil opened the day trading higher following the rally in stocks, but news that Nigeria had shut two of its pipelines for repairs, provided an additional boost to oil prices. Nigeria is a member of OPEC that produces over 2 percent of the global oil supplies, but analysts do not expect the price of oil to move significantly higher until global oil demand exceeds supply.
Here in the U.S. those filing new unemployment claims for the prior week remained low with initial claims down 6,000 to 271,000. Additionally, Gross Domestic Product, the broadest measure of the aggregate economic activity, rose 3.7 percent for the second quarter, beating both consensus expectations and first quarter’s 2.3 percent gain.