US STOCKS-Tesla lifts Nasdaq to record-high close


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    * Tesla rallies after opening solar charging station 
    * Retail darlings Alfi, Torchlight extend declines      

 (Updates with details at end of session)
    By Noel Randewich and Devik Jain
    June 23 (Reuters) - The Nasdaq climbed to a record-high
close on Wednesday, fueled by a rally in Tesla Inc  TSLA.O ,
with investors cheering data that showed a record peak for U.S.
factory activity in June.  
    Gains in Nvidia Corp  NVDA.O  and Facebook Inc  FB.O 
extended a recent rebound in top-shelf growth stocks that fell
out of favor in recent months as investors focused on companies
expected to do well as the economy recovers from the pandemic.
    Data firm IHS Markit said its flash U.S. manufacturing
Purchasing Managers' Index rose to a reading of 62.6 this month,
beating estimates of 61.5, but manufacturers are still
struggling to secure raw materials and qualified workers,
substantially raising prices.*:nL2N2O42C6
    The "high level of today's surveys will provide some
confirmation for the Fed that the time to begin taking its foot
off the accelerator is not far away," said Jai Malhi, global
market strategist at J.P. Morgan Asset Management.
    On Tuesday, Fed Chair Jerome Powell reaffirmed the central
bank's intent not to raise interest rates too quickly, based
only on the fear of coming inflation.*:nL2N2O31WU
    Powell's comments follow the Fed's projection a week ago of
an increase in interest rates as soon as 2023, sooner than
anticipated. Since then, growth stocks, including major tech
names like Tesla and Nvidia, have mostly rallied and
outperformed value stocks, like banks and materials companies.
    "People are plowing money into what has worked. People are
basically momentum-chasing and they're using the last three
years of performance to figure out what to chase," said Mike
Zigmont, head of trading and research at Harvest Volatility
Management in New York.
    Around half of the 11 major S&P sector indexes rose, with
consumer discretionary  .SPLRCD  among the top gainers.
   Tesla jumped after the electric vehicle maker said it had
opened a solar-powered charging station with on-site power
storage in the Tibetan capital Lhasa, its first such facility in
China. That trimmed the stock's loss in 2021 to about
    Unofficially, the Dow Jones Industrial Average  .DJI  fell
0.21% to end at 33,873.19 points, while the S&P 500  .SPX  lost
0.11% to 4,241.89.
    The Nasdaq Composite  .IXIC  climbed 0.13% to 14,271.73.
    The S&P 500 has gained about 13% in 2021, while the Nasdaq
and Dow are up about 11%. 
    Nikola Corp  NKLA.O  rallied after the electric and hydrogen
vehicle maker said it is investing $50 million in Wabash Valley
Resources LLC to produce clean hydrogen in the U.S. Midwest for
its zero-emission trucks.*:nL3N2O52UH
    Among so-called meme stocks, software firm Alfi Inc  ALF.O 
tumbled after more than doubling in value in the prior session,
while Torchlight Energy Resources Inc  TRCH.O  slumped for a
second day after announcing an upsized stock offering.*:nL3N2O51YC*:nL3N2O42M6

 (Reporting by Noel Randewich in Oakland, Calif., and Devik Jain
and Medha Singh in Bengaluru
Editing by Maju Samuel and Matthew Lewis)
+1 (415) 677 2542, Twitter: @randewich))

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