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Stocks rebound; technology rally leads Nasdaq to record high

Trader Phyllis Arena Woods works on the floor

Trader Phyllis Arena Woods works on the floor of the NYSE on Wednesday. Photo Credit: AP / Richard Drew

Technology companies soared Thursday as major U.S. stock indexes recovered the ground they lost a day earlier. The Nasdaq composite closed at another all-time high.

Big names like Apple and Microsoft and chipmakers including Intel all made big gains as investors remain optimistic about the technology sector even though much of the market has been shaken by escalating tensions between the U.S. and its trading partners, especially China.

Banks will begin reporting their second-quarter results Friday morning. Investors expect another round of strong profit growth for the whole market, but they're especially optimistic about technology companies. They will announce their earnings later this month.

"Tech has been there for them through all of these ups and downs," said Karyn Cavanaugh, senior markets strategist at Voya Investment Management. "They're a good wingman for investors, and that's why investors are sticking with them."

The S&P 500 index rose  0.9 percent, to 2,798.29. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 224.44 points, or 0.9 percent, to 24,924.89.

The Nasdaq jumped 1.4 percent, to 7,823.92. Its last record came on June 20.

The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks added  0.4 percent, to 1,690.28.

Industrial companies also regained much of the ground they lost Wednesday, but energy companies and basic materials makers failed to rally. Defense contractors climbed after President Donald Trump advocated for more defense spending in the U.S. and Europe.--AP

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