By CCN Markets: The Dow diverged from the broader U.S. stock market on Thursday, as concerns over the economy and monetary policy kept investors on the sidelines.
Dow Rallies; S&P 500 Flatlines
The U.S. stock market was mixed in late-afternoon trading, mirroring a tepid pre-market for Dow futures. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was the lone bright spot among the major indexes, gaining more than 100 points in the afternoon session.
After shedding a bit of that rally, the DJIA was last seen at 26,290.77 for a gain of 88 points or 0.34%.
The broad S&P 500 Index of large-cap stocks flat-lined at 2,926.45 for a paltry gain of 0.06%. Materials were the worst-performing sector, followed by information technology.
Sliding technology shares weighed on the Nasdaq Composite Index, which fell 0.22% to 8,002.70.
Jackson Hole Summit Underway
The Kansas City Federal Reserve kicked off its annual Jackson Hole Symposium on Thursday against a backdrop of uncertainty over monetary policy and the health of the global economy. Ahead of the summit, Kanas City Fed President Esther George said the U.S. central bank should not have cut interest rates last month.
A rate cut “wasn’t required in my view,” she told CNBC’s Steve Liesman.
George and Boston Fed counterpart Eric Rosengren voted for keeping interest rates on hold in July.
Fed Chairman Jerome Powell could shed light on the pace and timing of future policy changes on Friday when he delivers a keynote address at Jackson Hole. Based on Fed Fund futures prices, the central bank will almost surely lower interest rates again at their next meeting in September.
The theme of this year’s Jackson Hole summit is “Challenges for Monetary Policy,” which aptly describes what’s going on with major central banks.