U.S. Stocks Surge as Worry Eases over Aggressive Fed Hikes

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Investing.com — U.S. stocks rallied on Friday as investors try to break a three-week losing streak and end on a positive note.

At 1:24 PM ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 656 points or 2.1%, while the S&P 500 was up 2.4% and the NASDAQ Composite was up 2.4%.

Investors have been concerned about a recession ahead as several Wall Street economists raise the odds of one happening sometime in the next 12 months. With the housing market showing signs of cooling, new home sales data for May was unexpectedly strong, rising an annualized 696,000.

But Michigan consumer sentiment , the final reading for the month, was a tepid 50, slightly lower than the 50.2 expected and the lowest since the late 1970s.

But Friday’s rally showed investors determined to end the week on a high note after putting fears about aggressive rate hikes by the Federal Reserve on the back burner. The Fed raised its benchmark rate by three-quarters of a percentage point earlier this month and was on track for another half-point to three-quarter point increase at its July meeting. Fed Chair Jerome Powell acknowledged in congressional testimony this week that recession was a risk, but he also said the economy was strong enough to withstand successive rate increases.

Carnival Corporation (NYSE:CCL) rose 11% after the cruise operator said second-quarter revenue increased nearly 50% from the first quarter.  

Shares of auto dealer CarMax Inc (NYSE:KMX) rose 5% after it beat earnings expectations despite a challenging environment.

FedEx Corporation (NYSE:FDX) shares jumped 7% after earnings beat estimates on higher rates and fuel surcharges, which overcame declining shipping volume. The logistics giant released an optimistic forecast for fiscal 2023. 

Oil rebounded. Crude Oil WTI Futures were up 2%, to $106 a barrel, while Brent Oil Futures were up 1.9% to $112 a barrel. Gold Futures were flat at $1,830.