S&P 500 rises as Wall Street tries to recover from 3-day slump

The S&P 500 rose on Wednesday as Wall Street tried to snap a three-day losing streak and end August on a high note.

The broad stock index rose 0.2%, trying to regain the 4,000 level after falling below in the previous session for the first time since July. The Nasdaq Composite rose 1.1%, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average hovered above the flatline.

All major averages are on track to end the month down around 3%.

PayPal shares jumped about 5% after Bank of America upgraded the stock, saying Elliott Management will likely push for more changes to the business, which will boost earnings. Shares of Netflix also gained 5% after social media company Snap lost two top executives to the streaming service.

Markets had been selling strongly since Friday after hawkish remarks by Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell. More recently, New York Fed President John Williams called for “a somewhat restrictive policy to slow demand.”

The selloff on Wall Street unfolded on Tuesday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average slipping almost 1%. The Nasdaq Composite fell 1.1% and the S&P 500 fell 1.1%, dropping below 4,000 for the first time since late July. All major averages were on track to end August with losses.

Despite Tuesday’s sell-off and hawkish remarks from the Fed, some investors are hopeful that the rate hike cycle may be coming to an end. Kevin Mahn, chief investment officer at Hennion & Walsh Asset Management, said he could see the Fed “become less hawkish” and that could be tailwinds that would support a strong fourth-quarter close for stocks.

“Certainly not dovish, but less hawkish,” he told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” on Wednesday. “A locked rate of 75 basis points – everything is in place for September. They don’t mean October and I think they will come back in November and December and only increase by 25 basis points at each of these two meetings. “

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