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Wall Street closed higher across the key indices on Friday to round out a strong first half of 2023. Technology stocks were once again the driving force behind Friday’s rally, with Nvidia rising 3.6%, Microsoft advancing 1.6% and apple adding 2.3% higher to close above a US$3trn market cap. The Dow Jones added 0.84% on Friday, the S&P500 rose 1.23%, and the tech-heavy Nasdaq advanced 1.45%, to end its best first half of a year since 1983.
Nike shares fell 2.7% on Friday after the apparel giant posted a weaker-than-expected quarterly profit.
Despite the very strong first half, some of Wall Street expect investors to take profits from the first half rally in the second half amid ongoing volatility and the outlook for interest rates to continue rising alongside the potential threat of a recession.
Over in Europe, markets closed higher on Friday and notched out gains for the first half despite interest rate hikes and the regional banking crisis. Eurozone inflation data for June also released late last week showed a greater-than-expected fall to 5.5% for the month indicating the fiscal tightening of the ECB could be starting to have an impact. On Friday the STOXX600 rose 1.2%, Germany’s DAX added 1.26%, the French CAC rose 1.19% and, in the UK, the FTSE100 rose 0.8%.
Locally, the ASX rose 0.12% to finish the last trading session of the financial year at 7203 points and up 1.47% for the week. Information technology were again the leading stocks on the ASX on Friday, with the sector adding 0.83%, while consumer staples and healthcare stocks were sold off.
Link Administration Holdings (ASX:LNK) tanked almost 14% on Friday after the company provided an update that one of its largest customers, industry superannuation fund HESTA, will not renew its contract when it expires.
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