Stocks finished firmly higher Wednesday. The Dow jumped 545 points to 26180, while the S&P 500 added 58 points to 2813. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 194 points to 7570.
The major averages extended their recent rebound as investors digested the outcome of the midterm elections. As expected, the Democratic Party took control of the House of Representatives, while the GOP strengthened its stronghold on the U.S. Senate. On the data front, mortgage applications dipped to the lowest level in four years in the prior week amid higher interest rates. Separately, a report showed that consumer credit rose a less-than-anticipated $10.9 billion in September, the smallest increase in three months.
All 11 S&P 500 sectors ended in positive territory, with ten sectors adding more than 1%. The Consumer Discretionary group paced gains, adding 3.2% as Amazon gained 6.9% to $1755.49. Health Care stocks also outperformed with UnitedHealth Group climbing 4.2% to $274.63 and Pfizer gaining 3.2% to $44.40. Technology stocks rallied with Microsoft advancing 3.9% to $111.96 and Salesforce jumping 5.9% to $141.79.
Breadth was positive on issues by 4:1 on the NYSE and by 2:1 on the Nasdaq. Composite NYSE volume was more than 3.8 billion shares.
Treasuries were mixed with the yield on the 10-year note unchanged at 3.22%. In commodities, WTI crude fell 1.0% to $61.59/barrel on the NYMEX, near its lowest level since March as official government data showed U.S. stockpiles rose for the seventh consecutive week. COMEX gold was little changed at $1,226.70/ounce despite a weaker dollar.