Stocks – Wall Street Closes Books on Weak 2018 With a Gain


Stocks - Wall Street Closes Books on Weak 2018 With a Gain – Stocks closed higher Monday, giving investors a little consolation in what was a disappointing year.

The S&P 500 rose 0.85%, while the Dow gained 1.15%. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 0.77%.

It was a rough December for the market, with the S&P down 10.2%, the Dow falling 9.7% and the Nasdaq off 10.8%.

All three indexes were down 4% or more for 2018, the worst year for major indexes in a decade.

“We were very strong through most of the year, it’s really been the last quarter where things fell apart a bit,” said JJ Kinahan, chief market strategist at TD Ameritrade. “People got nervous in large part because of unknowns facing the markets.”

Today’s gains were led by the health care sector, which remained strong throughout the day. The S&P 500 Health Care index gained 1.4%.

Among individual stocks, Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) was a high flyer, rising 4.5% following the release of its new choose-you-own-adventure show “Bandersnatch” on Friday where viewer choices lead to different outcomes.

Among the rest of the FAANGs, Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) rose 1.6%, Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) rose 1% and Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL) lost 0.2%.

Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) lost 1.6% following a New York Times report that there is mounting criticism of the Federal Trade Commission for not doing enough to deal with privacy concerns at Silicon Valley giants.

Away from stocks, oil ended the year down 25% and gold finished 2018 2% lower.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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