US markets closed at record levels on Friday, fueled by Japan’s decision to ramp up its stimulus spending program. Markets in Asia and Europe also reported significant gains.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1% at the end of the day, to a record 17,390.52. The S&P 500 also rose by 1%, closing at a new high of 2,018.05.
Markets were significantly affected by the Bank of Japan’s (somewhat sudden) announcement that it would be increasing its asset buying plan to 80 trillion yen a year – up from the previous rate of 60-70 trillion yen.
Traders appear to be happy with the fact that Japan is going to be adopting a hefty QE plan.
The dollar rose to a seven year high versus the yen – above 112 yen to the dollar.
Expedia shares were up by more than 5% at the end of the trading day. The increase was driven by the fact that the company reported very solid third quarter results.
Groupon performed extremely well, surging by 22% after profit and revenue results for the third quarter that blew away all forecasts.
On the other hand, Starbucks, which announced it plans on offering a delivery service next year, saw its shares fall by 2.3% – its sales were shy of what analysts had forecast.
A strong dollar pushed the price of oil down. US crude slipped down to $80.66 a barrel, while Brent for December dropped to $85.86 a barrel.