After a big 2021, Wall Street starts new year edging higher

<p><p>Stocks rose in afternoon trading on Wall Street Monday in a solid start to the new year after closing out 2021 with big gains for the third year in a row.</p></p><p><p>The S&amp;P 500 rose 0.1% as of 12:02 p.m. Eastern. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 49 points, or 0.1%, to 36,387 and the Nasdaq rose 0.6%.</p></p><p><p>Technology companies and a mix of retailers gained ground. Tesla jumped 10.3% after after reporting strong delivery numbers for 2021.</p></p><p><p>Bond yields rose significantly. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 1.62% from 1.51% Friday.</p></p><p><p>Banks, which rely on higher yields to charge more lucrative interest on loans, gained ground. Bank of America rose 4.1%.</p></p><p><p>Smaller company stocks outpaced the broader market in a signal that investors felt confident about economic growth. The Russell 2000 rose 0.6%.</p></p><p><p>Health care companies fell broadly and kept gains elsewhere in the market in check.</p></p><p><p>Pfizer shed 3% despite news that the U.S. is closer to potentially expanding its COVID-19 booster shots for children as young as 12.</p></p><p><p>A mix of household goods makers also fell.</p></p><p><p>Investors are heading into a new year with the virus pandemic still posing a threat to the economy.</p></p><p><p>Wall Street has been busy since December monitoring the latest wave of cases with the omicron variant.</p></p><p><p>Businesses and consumers are also still dealing with supply chain problems and persistently rising inflation that has made a wide range of goods more expensive.</p></p><p><p>The rising costs could threaten to crimp consumer spending and weaken economic growth.</p></p><p><p>The long list of concerns made for a choppy end to 2021, but didn’t stop the broader market from notching another year of strong gains.</p></p><p><p>The S&amp;P 500 finished with a gain of 26.9% in 2021, or a total return of 28.7%, including dividends. That’s nearly as much as the benchmark index gained in 2019.</p></p><p><p>Investors have several key pieces of economic data to look forward to during the first week of the new year.</p></p><p><p>The Institute for Supply Management will give investors an update on the manufacturing sector on Tuesday and the services sector on Thursday.</p></p><p><p>The big event on the economic calendar this week is the Labor Department’s jobs report on Friday.</p></p>