Markets closed up on Wall Street today: Dow +1.33%, S&P +1.07%, Nasdaq +1.20%, Oil +4.21%, Gold +3.31%.
On the commodities front, Oil (NYSE:USO) climbed to $83.62 a barrel. Precious metals were also up, with Gold (NYSE:GLD) climbing to $1,647.60 an ounce while Silver (NYSE:SLV) climbed 5.65% to $31.67 an ounce.
Hot Feature: Is the European Debt Crisis Bullish for Gold?
Today’s markets were up because:
1) Europe. Markets got a boost today on hopes that European leaders were nearing solid and lasting resolutions to combat the sovereign debt crisis, with the European Financial Stability Facility poised to receive more funding, Greece voting on austerity measures that will ensure it receive its next 8 billion-euro tranche of aid and avoid default, and European Central Bank looking as though it will act more aggressively in the future. However, all that is still just speculation and rumor — no concrete plans have been announced, and Greece’s parliament has yet to approve a very unpopular measure that would raise property taxes and cut public jobs.
2) Banks. As was the case yesterday, banks continued to perform well today, as hope that the sovereign debt crisis in Europe, which would leave many banks exposed to the kind of financial crisis witnessed in 2008, might soon be managed. Shares of JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM), Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS), Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC), Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS), and Citigroup (NYSE:C) were all trading higher today, joined by many European banks as well, including France’s Crédit Agricole, Société Générale, and BNP Paribas, all of which jumped over 13% today.
3) Tech. With Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) preparing to launch the iPhone 5 next week, Carl Icahn looking as though he’ll step in to save Research in Motion (NASDAQ:RIMM), Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) set to introduce its new tablet, said to be the iPad’s biggest competition to date, and a host of other big tech news, it’s no wonder the technology sector was one of the day’s biggest gainers.