U.S. stocks shake off slide with late-afternoon rally

The stock market is trying to rebound Wednesday from a disastrous Christmas Eve

USA stocks were attempting a modest rebound on Wednesday, boosted by technology shares and an Amazon-led jump in retailers, following four sessions of steep losses that pushed the S&P 500 and Dow Industrials near bear market territory.

Eastern Time. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 731 points, or 3.4 percent, to 22,524.

The Standard & Poor's 500 Index rose 116.60 points to 2,467.70, recording a gain of 4.96 percent for the day. It also was the worst Christmas Eve for the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite and the first time the broader S&P 500 ever had more than a 1 percent drop on December 24.

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"The markets are in panic mode that the United States economy is tanking", Stephen Innes, head of Asia-Pacific trading for online broker Oanda, said in an email. Many economic barometers still look encouraging. Amazon had its biggest gain in more than a year. That's down from a 5.5 percent yearly gain in the previous month. The Nasdaq Composite traded 0.2 percent higher after dropping more than 3 percent.

The Federal Reserve's decision to boost interest rates, concerns about slower global growth, and a partial USA government shutdown have caused unease among investors, leading to a sharp drop in US stock prices. A reminder that consumers-a key part of the American economy-remain on solid footing helped soothe anxiety created by fears of a global slowdown and personnel churn in the US administration.

A late report that a USA government delegation will travel to Beijing in two weeks to hold trade talks gave stocks a final push higher. "They don't have a feel for the Market, they don't understand necessary Trade Wars or Strong Dollars or even Democrat Shutdowns over Borders". Texas Instruments dropped 1.3 per cent to $91.74.

Although Wall Street's main fear gauge, the Cboe Volatility Index (VIX), fell sharply Wednesday, it still remained above 30 for much of the day, indicating that market participants continued to be uneasy.

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A drop in oil prices led to a 2.21% drop in the energy index, while technology and consumer discretionary stocks shed 1.54% and 1.77%, respectively.

Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.79 per cent from 2.75 per cent late on Monday.

Declining issues outnumbered advancers for a 5.52-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and for a 3.13-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.

Technology stocks in the likes of Amazon have recorded strong daily gains possibly due to the oversold conditions the market demonstrated. By the close, the Dow, S&P 500 and Nasdaq had notched their largest daily percentage gains in almost a decade.

Benchmark U.S. crude dropped 2.6 percent to $45.04 a barrel in NY.

Meanwhile, U.S. home price growth slowed in the month of October, according to data released Wednesday. The Nasdaq was up about 4.8%, pulling out bear market territory.

The S&P ended Monday 19.8 percent below its all-time closing high, with roughly three-fourths of its stocks already in a bear market. The euro advanced to $1.1456 from $1.1430. Britain's FTSE 100 fell 1.5 percent.

In other trading Wednesday, South Korea's Kospi gave up 1.3 percent, while Japan's Nikkei 225 index, which plunged 5 percent on Tuesday, picked up 0.9 percent.

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