Stock Markets Gain after Yellen Gives Generally Positive Economic Outlook

Markets Movers

The stock markets in the United States gained after Federal Reserve Chairperson provided a generally positive economic outlook although the jobs report was weaker than expected.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 0.70% to 17,931.77 points and the S&P 500 increased 0.53% to 2,110.28 points around 2:09 in the afternoon in New York. The NASDAQ went 0.63% to 4,973.59 points and the Russell 2000 surged 1% 1,175.90 points.

Yellen expects labor market and GDP growth

Yellen said the market should not overreact to the disappointing jobs report last week since positives outweigh negatives in the U.S. economy. She also stated that a gradual interest rate hike will be appropriate.

In her speech in Philadelphia, Yellen said, “I continue to think that the federal fund rate will probably need to rise gradually over time to ensure price stability and maximum sustainable employment in the longer run.”

The Department of Labor reported that U.S. employers added 38,000 jobs in May, lower than the 164,000 jobs expected by economists.  According to Yellen, even if the jobs report was “concerning,” she emphasized that “one should never attach too much significance to any single monthly report.” She added, “Other timely indicators from the labor market have been more positive.”

Furthermore, Yellen said, “I see good reasons to expect that the positive forces supporting employment growth and higher inflation will continue to outweigh the negative ones. As a result, I expect the economic expansion to continue, with the labor market improving further and GDP growing moderately.”

Market movers

The stock price of Vascular Biogenics (NASDAQ:VBLT) surged more than 79% to $7.13 per share at the time of this writing. The company recently announced that its Phase 2 study on VB-11 met the primary endpoint of statistically-significany median overall survival in recurrent glioblastoma patients.

Argos Therapeutics (NASDAQ:ARGS) gained more than 20% to $7.46 per share. The stock is expected reach around $12.80 per share, but the most bullish estimate was $18 per share for the year.

The Class A (NASDAQ:GOOGL) and Class C (NASDAQ:GOOG) shares of Alphabet are trading lower today. GOOG shares are down 0.68% to $717.46 each while GOOGL shares are down 0.61% to $731.14 each. The Supreme Court rejected the search engine giant’s appeal in a class action lawsuit filed by advertises who claimed that their ads were displayed on “low quality” websites.