Stocks rose following the greatest increase in US retail sales since March, with figures from industry behemoths Walmart Inc. and Home Depot Inc. indicating robust demand even as inflation squeezes purchasing power.

The robust retail statistics, together with better-than-expected factory output and homebuilder optimism, helped rally markets, overshadowing comments from Fed's Bullard that the central bank should reduce monetary assistance more quickly to offset inflation.

The S&P 500 extended its November surge, while all major equity indices advanced. Treasuries dropped.

Biden informed reporters that a nominee for Fed head would be announced in "the next four days." Biden is debating whether to re-appoint Jerome Powell as chairman. He's also interviewed Fed Governor Lael Brainard, who is sought by several progressive politicians and activists for the role. According to a person familiar with the situation, the president has yet to make a decision.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. strategists raised their estimate for US equities, predicting that the surge that has driven the benchmark index to consecutive record highs will continue into 2022. Global fund managers in Bank of America Corp.'s November poll had the largest overweight in American shares since August 2013, while JPMorgan Chase & Co. strategists remain positive on equities despite forecasts that central banks would remain dovish.

Across the board, cryptocurrencies plummeted, with bitcoin falling below $60,000 in a broad retreat from recent record highs.