landsberg bennettStocks ended higher Friday as investors remained optimistic about easing monetary policy following central bank updates earlier this week. The Dow climbed 244 points, capping weekly gains of 1.5%, while notching a fresh record high. The S&P 500 also set a new record today after rising 0.5% and 0.8% for the week, closing above 3,000 points for the first time. Meanwhile, the Nasdaq Composite gained 0.6% on the day and 1.0% for the week.

Yesterday, Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell wrapped up his two-day testimony before Congress, setting the stage for a potential rate cut at the FOMC’s July 31st meeting. Trade updates were also in focus amid reports that the Trump administration is concerned about the ability to solidify a formal trade agreement with China. On the data front, producer prices (excluding food & energy) increased 0.3% in June, above consensus estimates of a 0.2% uptick. Treasuries advanced despite the inflation update, with the yield on the 10-year note down two basis point to 2.11%, still near the highest level in a month.

Eight of 11 S&P 500 sectors ended in positive territory with the Industrial sector pacing the gains. Energy shares gained 2.1% on the week amid higher oil prices attributed to rig closures in the Gulf of Mexico ahead of the tropical storm Barry. Healthcare lagged with Johnson & Johnson sliding 4.1% after Bloomberg reported the Justice Department is pursuing a criminal investigation into the company. In M&A news, shares of Colgate Palmolive ticked up 0.7% after the consumer product giant announced plans to acquire France’s Laboratoires Filorga Cosmetiques.