Nasdaq Composite Index Books Gains as Calm Prevails on Wall Street

The Nasdaq Composite Index held on to gains Friday, as technology and biotechnology shares finished in positive territory amid prevailing calm on Wall Street.

The technology-laden index rose 0.3% to 6,351.56, where it closed near session highs.

In terms of most active shares, 1,735 companies reported gains on Friday, with 91 settling at new highs. A total of 1,229 companies finished in the red, with 80 recording new lows. A total of 217 shares traded flat.

Apple Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) rose 0.5%. The iPhone maker surged to new record highs earlier this week on upbeat quarterly earnings.

Shares of Microsoft Corp (NASDAQ: MSFT) added 0.7%. Nvidia Corporation (NASDAQ: NVDA) finished up 0.4%.

Chipmaker Intel Corp (NASDAQ: INTC) closed down 0.6%, placing it among the worst performing Dow industrials.

The Nasdaq Biotechnology Index, which tracks securities trading in the biotech and pharmaceutical industries, advanced 0.4% to 3,306.40.

The large-cap S&P 500 Index also finished higher on Friday, climbing 0.2% to 2,476.83. The S&P 500’s technology component rose 0.3%, led by technology hardware and communications equipment.

Meanwhile, the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 0.3% on route to a new record close of 22,092.81.

The Nasdaq exchange is exploring blockchain technology to distribute time-sensitive information more efficiently, according to an application released by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The document, which was published Thursday, outlines a distributed platform system that would enable information to be transmitted and time-stamped. Each modification would be recorded on a distributed ledger in a manner that is reminiscent of the way bitcoin transactions are recorded.

Analysts say the patent reflects the latest efforts by Nasdaq to expand its footprint in blockchain and cryptocurrency.

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Sam Bourgi is a financial market analyst for economiccalendar.com. He has more than six years of progressive experience in economic and financial analysis, research consulting and sectoral analysis. As a published author in government, peer-reviewed, online and industry sources, he has developed a fundamental approach to the financial markets with a broad focus on stock indices, commodities and the technology sector. He earned his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Windsor and Master’s degree from McMaster University.