U.S. stocks ended about 2 percent higher on Wednesday as markets extended gains on the FOMC minutes and recovered from Tuesday's selloff.
Closing 274.8 points higher, the Dow Jones Industrial Average had its best day since December 18, 2013. The index rose more than 275 points in intraday trade, briefly touching 17,000 and surpassing Tuesday's 273-point loss. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq had their best day since nearly a year ago on October 10, 2013.
"This is the near-term good news," JJ Kinahan, chief strategist at TD Ameritrade, said, noting that fixed-income buyers tended towards the short end rather than the long end.
Alcoa posts quarterly results after the bell, kicking off a slew of company earnings and guidance reports expected in the next few weeks.
"I think as we move into the earnings season next week, the markets will focus more and more on what companies are telling us," Quincy Krosby, market strategist at Prudential Financial, said. The "data that is coming out is backward-looking. Companies have more of a kaleidoscope" view.
Stocks had traded flat to modestly higher before surging on the release of the Fed minutes in the early afternoon. The report showed that the Federal Reserve staff cut their growth outlook due to the higher dollar, as a number of committee participants had concerns with global weakness.
"The Fed minutes certainly leave us feeling that they are tiptoeing into the interest hike," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at Wunderlich Securities. A "short-term, oversold market has this kind of reaction."