Stocks closed broadly higher on Wall Street Wednesday, driving the S&P 500 and Nasdaq indexes to more record highs. Technology stocks powered much of the rally as investors focused on the latest batch of mostly solid company earnings reports. The latest gains came as worries about the economic impact of the virus outbreak that originated in China continued to subside. Health officials raised hopes that the spread of the virus is peaking after new cases dropped for a second straight day. Worries about the economic impact of the outbreak fueled a wave of selling that erased the market’s gains in January, but traders have since largely set aside their jitters. The S&P 500 index is up 4.8 percent so far this month, on pace for its biggest monthly gain since June. “You have the continuing good news on the coronavirus potentially slowing and being under control, and that’s obviously powerful,” said Tom Martin, senior portfolio manager with Globalt Investments.
Investors got some encouraging news Wednesday when health officials reported that the number of new cases of the coronavirus in China declined for a second straight day.