Stocks have had a banner year, with gains in big tech leaving the market near all-time highs amid artificial-intelligence exuberance and dovish Federal Reserve bets.
In the run-up to 2023's final closing bell, the Nasdaq 100 was on track for its best year since 1999, with a $7 trillion surge. The S&P 500 approached a record - and is roughly 1% below the average full-year gain predicted in a recent analyst poll, with the index ending 2024 at 4,833.
In a world obsessed with interest rates, the stock market experienced a massive reversal this year after suffering its worst annual selloff since 2008. As traders increased their bets that the Fed will end its hike campaign and begin easing policy in 2024, global bonds are set for their biggest two-month gain on record.
The S&P 500 traded just a few points below its all-time high of 4,796.56, extending its 2023 gain to 25%. Treasuries fell following a $40 billion sale of seven-year notes. The dollar gained ground against the majority of its developed-market peers. The yen rose as Bank of Japan Governor Kazuo Ueda continued to lay the groundwork for the country's first rate hike since 2007.
The seven largest US tech stocks, from Nvidia to Microsoft, were responsible for 64% of the index's rally this year through last week as the AI frenzy took off. This year, the Nasdaq 100 is up 55%.
The 'Magnificent Seven,' which also includes Amazon, Apple, Alphabet, Meta Platforms, and Tesla, are expected to post 22% earnings growth next year, more than doubling the S&P 500's gain. The key question is how much of that is already factored into share prices, especially as expectations for a soft landing grow.