Major U.S. stock indexes closed higher Thursday, with the S&P 500 ending at 7-week highs after the official scorecard of the American economy showed a strong 2.9% annual rate of growth for the fourth quarter of 2022. The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.61% rose about 204 points, or 0.6%, ending near 33,948, close to the session’s high. But the day’s bigger gains came from the S&P 500 index SPX, +1.10% and the Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, +1.76%, which gained 1.1% and 1.8%, respectively. The S&P 500 ended at its highest close since Dec. 2, according to preliminary FactSet data. The U.S. economy reported a robust quarterly gain to end the year on Thursday, which helped advance risk-taking on Wall Street, even though many economist still expect the U.S. to face tougher odds of avoiding a recession in 2023 as the Fed plans to keep increasing rates in the next few months, and to keep them high for some time as part of its inflation fight.
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