Wall Street soars on sign of cooling inflation

STORY: U.S. stocks skyrocketed higher on Thursday, racking up their biggest daily percentage gains in about 2-1/2 years, after consumer prices data showed signs of slowing inflation that investors thought might get the Federal Reserve to ease up on its aggressive interest rate hikes.

The Dow jumped 3.7% and the S&P 500 soared 5.5%, while the Nasdaq saw a whopping 7.3% gain.

The Labor Department's closely watched inflation report showed CPI rose 7.7% from a year ago, the first time since February the annual inflation rate was below 8%.

Christian Ledoux, director of investment research at CAPTRUST, said that number would almost certainly allow the Fed to scale back its hefty interest rate hikes.

"I think the market has been trying to figure out where the Fed is going to be slowing and or pausing. And this particular report gives it a lot of confidence - the market, I'm meaning - that this could be the time that they do that in December."

One-time Wall Street darlings that have taken a beating in 2022 were among Thursday's strongest performers, with Nvidia, Meta Platforms and Google-parent Alphabet all soaring.

Mega-cap growth stocks Apple and Microsoft each jumped more than 8% - huge moves for the tech titans.

Shares of Amazon.com surged more than 12% after the Wall Street Journal reported that the e-commerce heavyweight was reviewing unprofitable business units to cut costs.

And shares of Rivian Automotive surged more than 17% after the electric-vehicle maker reported a smaller-than-expected loss, a higher number of pre-orders and reaffirmed its full-year production outlook.