Boeing shares surged on Thursday, December 3, after Ryanair confirmed a major order of Boeing 737 MAX jets while global stocks treaded water on mixed economic data.
The news, along with a successful test flight by American Airlines, helped send shares in Boeing higher as the aircraft moves closer to returning to the skies after winning approval by US regulators last month.
Shares in Boeing jumped 6%, helping to lift the Dow on a mixed day for US equities.
While the tech-rich Nasdaq edged to a fresh record, the broad-based S&P 500 finished lower.
European equities were also mixed, with London advancing and Paris and Frankfurt both pulling back.
Data provider IHS Markit said its closely-watched composite eurozone purchasing managers’ index (PMI) fell to 45.3 points in November from 50 in October, according to final estimates.
Revived US stimulus prospects?
Investors digested data showing slower growth in the US services sector in November and better-than-expected new unemployment claims ahead of the closely-watched Labor Department jobs report on Friday, December 4.
Markets have also monitored ongoing stimulus talks on Capitol Hill that have lifted hopes of a new spending package before the end of the year.
“In general, the market is acting rationally in looking ahead to the other side of this,” Art Hogan, chief market strategist at National Securities, said of the market’s strength.
But Hogan cautioned that stocks could be pressured later this month if rising US coronavirus cases stress hospital capacity, resulting in further business shutdowns.
“The narrative about how the market is feeling optimistic about 2021 recovery prospects because of the arrival of COVID vaccines is growing a bit tired, yet market participants have been given a stimulant with the increased buzz on Capitol Hill about the need to get another stimulus package done soon,” said market analyst Patrick J. O’Hare at Briefing.com.
Elsewhere, oil prices advanced as members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries struck a deal to increase production over coming months, but by less than anticipated in their previous accord.
Starting in January 2021, producers will pump 500,000 more barrels per day (bpd). The previous agreement entailed a cut of 7.7 million bpd and had been scheduled to be eased to 5.8 million bpd on January 1.
Meanwhile the pound surged to its highest level in a year, briefly rising above $1.35, after a government official expressed confidence on reaching a post-Brexit trade deal with the European Union.
Key figures around 9:50 pm GMT
- New York – Dow: UP 0.3% at 29,969.52 (close)
- New York – S&P 500: DOWN 0.1% at 3,666.72 (close)
- New York – Nasdaq: UP 0.2% at 12,377.18 (close)
- London – FTSE 100: UP 0.4% at 6,490.27 (close)
- Frankfurt – DAX 30: DOWN 0.5% at 13,252.86 (close)
- Paris – CAC 40: DOWN 0.2% at 5,574.36 (close)
- EURO STOXX 50: DOWN 0.1% at 3,517.10 (close)
- Tokyo – Nikkei 225: FLAT at 26,809.37 (close)
- Hong Kong – Hang Seng: UP 0.7% at 26,728.50 (close)
- Shanghai – Composite: DOWN 0.2% at 3,442.14 (close)
- Euro/dollar: UP at $1.2147 from $1.2115 at 10 pm GMT
- Pound/dollar: UP at $1.3453 from $1.3365
- Dollar/yen: DOWN at 103.84 yen from 104.42 yen
- Euro/pound: DOWN at 90.28 pence from 90.65 pence
- West Texas Intermediate: UP 0.8% at $45.64 per barrel
- Brent North Sea crude: UP 1% at $48.71 per barrel