US stocks climb to end the week higher as recovery optimism grows

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Deutsche Bank said retail investors have been key players in the stock market rally

US stocks closed higher on the last trading day of the week as optimism around the pace of economic recovery continues to grow.

“For now, the market is looking through these high readings and shares the Fed’s views that inflation is transitory,” Cliff Hodge, Cornerstone Wealth CIO, wrote in a statement. “We’ll likely have at least two more lofty prints before settling back down.”

Hodge said the “true gut check” will come in July and August when the country has gotten past the worst of the pandemic. This, he said, is when the window of risk for the markets really opens up.

“If inflation proves to be more sticky and we get a taper announcement that could be a double whammy for stocks,’ he added.

The Personal Consumption Expenditures price index – a key measure of domestic inflation – gained 0.6% in April, the Commerce Department announced Friday, as American spending rebounded.

The jump is the largest single-month gain since 2008, in line with the median estimate of a 0.6% increase from economists surveyed by Bloomberg.

The PCE index also notched a 3.6% year-over-year gain, surpassing the median estimate of 3.5%

“This report puts the Fed in a really good place, inflation is up, but real yields are still low,” Jamie Cox, managing partner for Harris Financial Group, said in a statement. “This is basically a transitory sweet spot.”

Here’s where US indexes stood shortly at the 4:00 p.m. ET close on Friday:

GameStop continued its rally amid a meme-stock resurgence with shares rising as much as 5.39%. In the past month alone, shares of GameStop are up nearly 50%, while fellow Reddit darling AMC has seen an incredible rise of nearly 200% over the same period.

AMC short-sellers, in fact, aren’t letting up. Instead, they’re digging in further. A week ago, the number of AMC shares on loan, used to short the stock, was 124 million. As of Friday, the number of shares on loan was 132 million, new data from ORTEX shows.

In the digital asset space, South Korea is moving forward with plans to impose a 20% income tax on capital gains from cryptocurrency transactions, according to a report. Starting next year, these will be classified as “miscellaneous income” and must be reported when filing for general income taxes in May 2023.

Meanwhile, the newly launched Crypto Council for Innovation, an industry group that includes heavyweights such as Square, Fidelity, Coinbase, and Paradigm, is looking for a new boss, DealBook first reported Friday. The news of CCI’s hunt for new leadership comes as authorities are mulling ways to increase oversight of crypto.

Oil prices were mixed. West Texas Intermediate crude fell by 0.61%, to $66.44 per barrel. Brent crude, oil’s international benchmark, rose 0.27%, to $69.65 per barrel.

Gold fell as much as 0.23%%, to $1,902.19 per ounce.

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