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S&P 500 in fresh record high after scaling 5,600 mark for first time

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Investing.com– The S&P 500 rose above 5,600 for the first time Wednesday, led by tech and ongoing hopes for sooner rate as Fed Chair Jerome Powell delivered his second-day of testimony before Congress, a day ahead of fresh inflation data. 

At 13:56 ET (17:56 GMT), the S&P 500 gained 0.70% to a record high of 5,617.6 and NASDAQ Composite rose 0.9%. The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded 189 points, or 0.5%, higher,

Tech continues to rein supreme as Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) rises to become reclaim throne as most valuable company 

Tech continue to support the broader market’s record run, aided by a rise in Nvidia and Apple, with the latter rising 1% to surpass Microsoft as the most valuable company, amid fresh investor optimism over its iPhone sales.

Apple is aiming to ship 10% more new iPhone in 2024 compared with last year on expectations that AI-enabled iPhones would help spur demand, Bloomberg reported, citing unnamed sources.

Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) was up nearly 1% as the software giant is reportedly set to relinquish its observer seat on the OpenAI board amid increasing regulatory scrutiny over generative AI in Europe and the U.S..

Keith Dolliver, Microsoft’s Deputy General Counsel, wrote to OpenAI on Tuesday, stating that while the observer seat provided valuable insights into the board’s activities without compromising its independence, it was no longer necessary, given that Microsoft had “witnessed significant progress from the newly formed board.”

NVIDIA Corporation (NASDAQ:NVDA), meanwhile, added more than 2% pushing the broader chip and tech sector higher. 

Powell sees path to soft landing 

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell said Wednesday he continues to see a soft landing for the U.S. economy even as the central bank’s persists with its restrictive monetary policy measures to bring down inflation. 

The Fed chief, however, reiterated remarks from a day earlier, saying that “getting inflation down” wasn’t the only risk and central bank needs to “be mindful of where the labor market is.”

The Fed Chair’s comments saw traders largely maintain bets on a September rate cut, with CME Fedwatch showing an over 72% chance for a 25 basis point cut during the month. 

Powell’s comments also put upcoming consumer price index inflation data, due Thursday, squarely in focus. 

Energy stocks inch higher as oil price ride falling crude inventories higher  

Energy stocks traded higher, shrugging the recent softer sentiment in the wake Exxon (NYSE:XOM) and BP (NYSE:BP) warning of lower refining profits, as oil prices were boosted by data showing weekly U.S. crude and gasoline inventories fell more than expected. 

Data from the Energy Information Administration, released Wednesday, showed that U.S. oil inventories unexpectedly fell by 3.4 million barrels last week, compared with expectations for a build of 700,000 barrels.

Baker Hughes Co (NASDAQ:BKR), Chevron Corp (NYSE:CVX) and Phillips 66 (NYSE:PSX) were the biggest gainers in the energy sector on the day. 

(Peter Nurse, Ambar Warrick contributed to this article.)

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