Wall Street hits high on trade optimism

An across-the-board rally led by defensive stocks drove Wall Street to record highs Friday. Lifting investor sentiment: positive economic data and improving trade relations with China. The S&P 500 gained half percent on the day and rose for the fourth straight week.

U.S. stocks hit record closing highs again on Friday and the S&P 500 registered its biggest weekly percentage gain since early September after data showed a rise in consumer spending and investors continued to be optimistic over progress in the U.S.-China trade war.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 77.59 points, or 0.27%, to 28,454.55, the S&P 500 gained 15.82 points, or 0.49%, to 3,221.19 and the Nasdaq Composite added 37.74 points, or 0.42%, to 8,924.96.

“As we go into next year, the economics certainly in the United States actually look pretty strong with a strong consumer and spending looking very very well. And I think we’re going to have a very good holiday season. So I think there’s a lot of reason the market is being optimistic into year end.”

Boeing shares declined. Its new astronaut capsule successfully launched but failed to reach the orbit it needed to get to the International Space Station.

Shares of its biggest supplier, Spirit AeroSystems dropped. The company said it’ll stop making fuselages for the grounded 737 MAX jets. The company gets half of its revenue from that plane. Boeing announced this week that it’ll temporarily halt the production of those planes.

The biggest gainer on the S&P: Carnival. The cruise operator that’s a bellwether for the industry issued a strong profit forecast for 2020.

Scholastic shares surged. Growth in its book fairs business helped the publisher post earnings that leapfrogged past Wall Street’s targets.

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