Powell also pointed to economic risks, including persistently weak inflation, slowing global growth and a downturn in business investment.
“The recent rally is speculation on the Fed lowering interest rates to continue to perpetuate this amazing recovery we’ve had. In Powell’s testimony today, he referenced that quite often – that the Fed’s job is to perpetuate this recovery by achieving full employment and controlling inflation, and they’ve done both,” said Tim Ghriskey, chief investment strategist at Inverness Counsel in New York.
“I’d say that’s what’s dominated the market over the past month or so.”
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 90.75 points, or 0.34 per cent, to 26,874.24, the S&P 500 gained 13.3 points, or 0.45 per cent, to 2,992.93 and the Nasdaq Composite added 51.65 points, or 0.63 per cent, to 8,193.38.
The S&P 500 index of financial shares, which tend to benefit in a higher interest rate environment, retreated 0.3 per cent after Powell’s comments.
Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 2.07-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.26-to-1 ratio favored advancers.
The S&P 500 posted 72 new 52-week highs and two new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 94 new highs and 37 new lows.