S&P 500, Nasdaq hit highest level since August as Nvidia, Microsoft hit records | November 20, 2023

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Stocks closed in the green on Monday, after notching their third straight week of wins as hopes for a retreat in US interest-rate hikes persisted.

The S&P 500 (^GSPC) closed up 0.7%, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average (^DJI) climbed more than 0.5%, or about 200 points. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite (^IXIC) gained more than 1% to finish out the first day of the shortened trading week.

Stocks have stayed aloft as signs of cooler inflation encouraged the market to believe the Federal Reserve is finally done with raising rates. Now the focus is on when a rate cut could come, with traders pricing in a 30% chance of that happening as soon as March.

Tuesday’s release of minutes from the Fed’s last meeting could provide fodder for that debate. But with little on the economic docket and the Thanksgiving closure on Thursday ahead, trading could stay muted.

Eyes will be on Nvidia’s financial results, also due Tuesday, after the chipmaker’s last earnings report sent stocks broadly roaring higher as the AI hype cycle kicked in. Nvidia (NVDA) closed at a record high on Monday with shares climbing more than 2%.

Microsoft (MSFT) also closed at an all-time high after the ouster of Sam Altman at OpenAI sent shockwaves through Wall Street.

After a weekend-long back-and-forth, Altman and fellow OpenAI co-founder Greg Brockman have joined Microsoft to lead a new advanced AI research team, according to Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella.

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