Wall Street soars to new highs as Iran conflict mounts, China fears fade

Markets were already rallying this week after the Federal Reserve signaled it could cut interest rates as soon as July.
Image: Markets Open Monday Morning As Fears Of Trade Wars Continue
Traders and financial professionals work at the opening bell on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on June 3, 2019.Drew Angerer / Getty Images file

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By Lucy Bayly

Wall Street headed towards a new set of record highs Friday, capping a week of rallies across all three major indexes that saw the Dow Jones Industrial Average approach 27,000, the S&P 500 hit a new intraday high, and the Nasdaq gain 3.4 percent for the week.

Markets were reacting to a variety of stimuli: a report that Vice President Mike Pence noted “positive signs” on China trade, conflict in the Persian Gulf, and a signal from the Federal Reserve that it would likely cut rates as soon as July.

The Dow had chalked up a gain of more than 150 points by midday Friday, at one point reaching 26,907. If those gains hold, it would be the first record close for the blue-chip index since October 2018.

A massive explosion at a major oil refinery in Philadelphia added volatility to an already tense oil market, which saw its biggest one-day gain on Thursday after Iran shot down a U.S. military drone, deepening fears of crippled oil supplies.