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Market Pulse: Dow industrials retake 34,000 as investors monitor Ukraine-Russia clash, watch Powell’s Senate testimony

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U.S. stocks rose on Thursday, aiming for a second straight day, even as Russia’s invasion of Ukraine persists and as investors digest the impact of the conflict in Eastern Europe on commodities and inflation broadly as the Federal Reserve aims to establish less accommodative monetary policy.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average
DJIA,
+0.47%

trades 240 points, or 0.7%, to reach 34,132.

The S&P 500 index
SPX,
+0.37%

rose 0.6% to 4,412.

The Nasdaq Composite Index
COMP,
+0.27%

was off 0.5% to 13,824.

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell will deliver a second day of congressional testimony, appearing before the Senate Banking Committee after saying on Wednesday he would recommend a quarter-point rate increase in two weeks time.

In economic reports, first-time applications for unemployment benefits fell by 18,000 to a two-month low of 215,000 in the past week of February, pointing to a pickup in hiring and declining layoffs as the economy rebounded from a omicron-induced lull. Economists polled by The Wall Street Journal had forecast initial jobless claims to total a seasonally adjusted 225,000 in the seven days ended Feb. 26.

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