Stock Market Today: Stocks Swing Higher After Powell Speech

Fed Chair Powell poured cold water on potential rate cuts, but stocks jumped anyway.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell at Spelman College podium
(Image credit: Alyssa Pointer/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell gave no indication the central bank has reached the end of interest rate hikes in Friday's speech, but market participants reacted as if he did. Indeed, the main indexes were mostly lower to start the day, but swung higher after Powell took the mic.  

Speaking at Spelman College in Atlanta, the head of the central bank said it is "premature" to say with certainty that the Fed has "achieved a sufficiently restrictive stance" or to speculate on rate cuts. Powell added that while recent lower inflation readings – including October's Consumer Price Index (CPI) – "are welcome," the Fed's ultimate goal is to reach the 2% target.

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Karee Venema
Senior Investing Editor,

With over a decade of experience writing about the stock market, Karee Venema is the senior investing editor at She joined the publication in April 2021 after 10 years of working as an investing writer and columnist at Schaeffer's Investment Research. In her previous role, Karee focused primarily on options trading, as well as technical, fundamental and sentiment analysis.