S&P 500 and Nasdaq Close at Records - Dow Up 450, or 1.6%

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq on Wednesday set closing and intraday highs. The Dow industrials climbed 1.6%.
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Stocks surged to a powerful finish Wednesday with the S&P 500 and Nasdaq once again setting intraday and closing highs.

The Nasdaq finished up 0.98% to 12,056. The index topped the 12,000 mark for the first time, despite declines in such marquee names as Apple  (AAPL) - Get Report, Netflix  (NFLX) - Get Report and Tesla  (TSLA) - Get Report.

The S&P 500 rose 1.54% to 3,580, while the the Dow Jones Industrial Average ended up 454 points, or 1.59%, to 29,100. 

Private companies in the U.S. added fewer jobs in August than expected. The private sector jobs report from ADP is a precursor to the official U.S. jobs report for August that will be released on Friday.

U.S. Private Companies Temper Hiring as Pandemic Wears On

"It’s a pretty substantial miss, but still much better than what we saw last month, so there is sustained yet modest improvement," said Mike Loewengart, managing director of investment strategy at E-Trade. 

"Keep in mind predicting jobs data has been particularly tricky during the pandemic. With a lot riding on employment data, any signs pointing to a positive trajectory could bring our economic recovery closer in line with the markets stellar performance. 

"And with Washington back in action, hopes for an answer to the labor problem are high. What remains to be seen is how that package will play into employment numbers in the weeks ahead," Loewengart added.

The Federal Reserve's Beige Book on Wednesday showed that business activity and employment increased modestly but that growth in certain parts of the country remained sluggish.

“Economic activity increased among most districts, but gains were generally modest and activity remained well below levels prior to the Covid-19 pandemic,” the Fed said in its survey. 

"Continued uncertainty and volatility related to the pandemic, and its negative effect on consumer and business activity, was a theme echoed across the country.”

U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said following a phone call Tuesday with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin that “serious differences” remain between Democrats and the White House over the next coronavirus relief package.

“Sadly, this phone call made clear that Democrats and the White House continue to have serious differences understanding the gravity of the situation that America’s working families are facing,” Pelosi said.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Wednesday he had doubts about a relief bill getting done in Congress.

“I don’t know if there will be another package in the next few weeks or not,” McConnell said.

Nvidia  (NVDA) - Get Report rose 3.80% to $573.86 Wednesday after the company unveiled new gaming chips and received a number of price target hikes from analysts.