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S&P rises above 4,000 level for first time

(Reuters) - The S&P 500 crossed the 4,000 mark for the first time on Thursday, jumping out of the gates for the second quarter with technology shares in the forefront and optimism about recovering U.S. growth, infrastructure spending and vaccines undergirding sentiment.

STORY:

MARKET REACTION:

* STOCKS: S&P 500 up 0.94% AT 4,010, Dow up 0.48%, Nasdaq up 1.54%

* BONDS: Benchmark 10-year notes last rose 20/32 in price to yield 1.6752%, from 1.746% late on Friday.

* FOREX: The dollar index fell 0.291%, with the euro up 0.35% to $1.1769.

COMMENTS:

JOE DURAN, HEAD OF GOLDMAN SACHS PERSONAL FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT, NEWPORT BEACH, CALIFORNIA

“Every time you hit new highs, more people get brought in. That’s the nature of investing because there’s a lot of money still sitting in cash. There aren’t a lot of good alternatives and so people get brought in. The problem is of course the money that comes in with short term aspirations also has shorter perspectives.”

“You get drawn in because the markets are going up. People just not wanting to miss out, and then when the market drops money pulls out a lot quicker, which is why the more you rally the more you have potential for volatility going forward.”

“It was an incredible year where you got to experience both sides of investing - the fear of losing money, which happened when we had the sharpest decline in the history of the market in the shortest period and then at the end of the year, we had the fear of missing out because we had such a strong rally.”

“That reminded everybody that in the short term, the market will be very emotional and reactive, but in the long term it always reverts back to fundamentals.”

KING LIP, CHIEF INVESTMENT STRATEGIST, BAKER AVENUE ASSET MANAGEMENT, SAN FRANCISCO

“Round numbers can be a psychological number for investors for some reason. I’ve never quite understood that.

“If we break above with strength, the market will continue to move higher. We’re still bullish for this year, and we think that with stimulus, with the Fed committed to being dovish, with the economy reopening due to more of the U.S. getting vaccinated, overall you’re going see corporate earnings do pretty well.

“Ultimately, how the market does really depends on earnings and how those earnings are discounted at prevailing rates. If we see corporate earnings at an all-time high this year, which is what we expect, we should also see the market at all-time highs.”

PETER CARDILLO, CHIEF MARKET ECONOMIST, SPARTAN CAPITAL SECURITIES, NEW YORK

“It’s starting off the quarter with a pleasant surprise. The S&P topping 4,000 suggests in this quarter we’ll see a broadening out of the market. And the fact that we saw a real surge in the ISM manufacturing index is indicative of the fact that the economy is running on all gears and that will lead to explosive economic activity in the latter part of this year.”

MATT HANNA, PORTFOLIO MANAGER, SUMMIT GLOBAL INVESTMENTS, SALT LAKE CITY, UTAH

“4,000 could be a possible inflection point where it renews confidence that this equity bull cycle is not over and that equities can remain resilient in the face of heightened interest rates and perhaps a not as extremely accommodative Fed policy.”

“We’ve been seeing the volatility over the past few months. There’s always a doubt that perhaps the rug can get pulled out but now that we’re hitting 4,000 I’m sure that renews confidence in a lot of traders’ minds that this bull cycle is not over.”

“And when you are in a bubble, confidence and optimism is a key component to keep that bubble inflating. We’re definitely seeing major speculation in various parts of the market. We don’t see that ending right now, but at some point the music’s going to have to stop.”

Compiled by the Global Finance & Markets Breaking News team

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