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Wall Street: the glass half-full rather than half-empty

( - After a difficult opening, Wall Street rallied on Friday morning to close in on its all-time highs, as investors tried to see the glass as half full in the day's various statistics.

In late morning trading, the Dow Jones gained just under 0.2% to 36,176.5 points, while the Nasdaq Composite shed 0.2% to 14,372.9 points.176.5 points, while the Nasdaq Composite dropped 0.2% to 14,372.9 points.

Although they dampened hopes of a rapid interest rate cut by the Federal Reserve, the morning's solid indicators did not dampen the optimism that has pervaded the equity markets since the end of October.

This morning, the Labor Department announced that the US economy had created 199,000 non-farm jobs in November, compared with the average economist forecast of around 150,000.

Stock market indexes continue to climb, as market participants conclude that more resilient US growth than expected will benefit equities in any case.

Another reassuring indicator of activity was the much better-than-expected improvement in consumer confidence in December, according to the first results of the University of Michigan's monthly survey.

The confidence index calculated on the basis of this household survey rose to 69.4 this month, after 61.3 in November, whereas economists were expecting it to be around 62.

Joanne Hsu, the report's author, attributes this brightening to the improvement in inflation expectations over a one-year horizon, now back to 3.1%, the lowest since March 2021.

On the bond market, the yield on 10-year Treasuries - which had been steadily losing ground since the end of October - started to rise again after these statistics, to almost 4.24%.

Similarly, the dollar strengthened against the euro, pushing the European currency back towards $1.0765.

For the week as a whole, the Dow Jones is currently down 0.2%, while the Nasdaq Composite is up 0.3%.

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