S&P 500 and Nasdaq rise after volatile month

S&P 500 and Nasdaq rise after volatile month

The S&P 500 edged up by 0.34, or less than 0.1%, to 4,288.39, coming off its worst month of the year. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 74.15 points, or 0.2%, to 33,433.35, and the Nasdaq Composite rose 88.45, or 0.7%, to 13.307.77.

Oil-and-gas stocks weighed on the market today after crude prices gave back some of the sharp gains made since the summer. The majority of the stocks fell alongside them, with more than three quarters of those within the S&P 500 sinking, but gains for Apple and other influential Big Tech stocks helped support indexes.

For the year, stocks have generally given back 40 percent of their strong gains for the year since the end of July. Wall Street's growing acceptance that high interest rates are here to stay a while as the Federal Reserve attempts to curb high inflation lower. It has resulted in the high levels of Treasury yields in more than a decade.

The yield of the 10-year Treasury rose to 4.67%, up from 4.58% Friday to 4.67%, and is nearing its highest level since 2007.

High interest rates make borrowing more expensive for businesses, which can affect their profits. Since the Federal Reserve announced last month it would not cut rates as much as earlier expected, the value of the dollar has also risen compared to other currencies. That can be a painful blow for S&P 500 companies, who receive a significant portion of their revenue from abroad.

The US economy has resisted predictions that it would have fallen into a recession by now, making it so far holding up.

Manufacturing has been one of those areas that's felt the sting of higher rates, and reports Monday suggest it's still contracting, though perhaps not by as much as expected. The Institute for Supply Management's September survey said U.S. manufacturing shrank for an 11th consecutive month.

The report also indicates prices had eased in September, which was more encouraging for Wall Street. This might mean less pressure on inflation, which has been experiencing heat lately from rising oil prices.

Congress won, in part, despite a shutdown of the federal government that threated to hurt the economy and disrupted the release of economic data Wall Street finds crucial. But Capitol Hill only temporarily delayed the threat, promising another showdown. Besides, traders are well aware that the stock market has held up pretty well through past shutdowns, he said.