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Stocks Seeing Continued Strength In Mid-Day Trading

Stocks remain mostly positive in mid-day trading on Friday after showing a notable move to the upside earlier in the session. With the gains on the day, the major averages are further offsetting the sell-off that was seen on Wednesday.

Currently, the major averages are hovering firmly in positive territory. The Dow is up 128.39 points or 0.6 percent at 20,791.41, the Nasdaq is up 39.45 points or 0.7 percent at 6,094.58 and the S&P 500 is up 18.03 points or 0.8 percent at 2,383.75.

The strength on Wall Street comes as traders continue to pick up stocks at relatively low levels following the substantial weakness that was seen two days ago.

The sell-off on Wednesday was triggered in part by reports President Donald Trump asked former FBI Director Comey to drop a federal investigation of former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.

However, Trump flatly denied the claim he urged Comey to back off Flynn in a news conference after the close of trading on Thursday.

Trump sought to reassure Americans he was focused on efforts to create jobs, cut taxes and repeal and replace Obamacare despite the recent scandals that have plagued the White House.

“We have to get back to running this country really, really well,” Trump said. “My total priority, believe me, is the United States of America.”

Positive sentiment may also have been generated by comments from St. Louis Federal Reserve President James Bullard raising questions about the need for another increase in interest rates next month.

Noting the financial market reaction to the March rate hike has been opposite of what is typically expected, Bullard said the Fed’s contemplated policy rate path may be overly aggressive relative to incoming economic data.

Bullard, who is not a voting member of the Fed’s policy committee this year, pointed out that U.S. macroeconomic data since the March meeting has been relatively weak.

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