NEW YORK, New York - A slowing of wages growth in the fourth quarter, as reported by the Labor Department, pushed U.S. stocks higher Tuesday.
"As the Fed meeting begins today, they'll be looking at every index that could give them a better judgment on inflation and this is one of them," Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities LLC told Reuters news agency Tuesday.
"Labor costs are still high, but this means costs have come down, and that's a key factor for future wage inflation."
The Nasdaq Composite jumped 190.74 points or 1.67 percent to close Tuesday at 11,584.55.
The Standard and Poor's 500 firmed 58.83 points or 1.46 percent to 4,076.60.
The Dow Jones industrials surged 368.95 points or 1.09 percent to 34,086.04.
The U.S. dollar was steady on Tuesday. The euro was range-bound around 1.0862 by the U.S. close. The British pound softened to 1.2317. The Japanese yen was little changed at 130.20. The Swiss franc strengthened to 0.9161.
The Canadian dollar edged up to 1.33090. The Australian dollar was weaker at 0.7051. The New Zealand dollar was steady at 0.6462.
Overseas equity markets were mostly flat to lower. The Dax in Germany was flat, rising just 0.01 percent Tuesday. The Paris-based CAC 40 mirrored Germany's bourses, too rising by just 0.01 percent. In London, the FTSE 100 dipped 0.17 percent.
Asian markets closed universally lower in response to the falls on Wall Street on Monday. In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 was off 0.39 percent Tuesday. The Hang Seng in Hong Kong declined 1.03 percent. China's Shanghai Composite slipped 0.42 percent.
The Australian All Ordinaries fell 0.19 percent. Indonesia's Jakarta Composite retreated 0.48 percent. The Singapore Straits Times index dropped 0.37 percent.
In New Zealand, the S&P/NZX 50 fell 0.55 percent. South Korea's Kospi Composite shed 1.04 percent.