TORONTO -- North American stock markets rallied in the aftermath of interest rate cuts on both sides of the border and a strong primary night for former U.S. vice president Joe Biden.

The S&P/TSX composite index closed up 355.91 points at 16,779.53.

In New York, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 1,173.45 points or 4.5 per cent at 27,090.86. The S&P 500 index was up 126.75 points at 3,130.12, while the Nasdaq composite was up 334.00 points at 9,018.09.

The Canadian dollar traded for 74.67 cents US compared with an average of 74.83 cents US on Tuesday in the wake of a decision by the Bank of Canada to cut its key interest rate by half a percentage point to address worries about the economic impact of the new coronavirus.

The April crude contract was down 40 cents at US$46.78 per barrel and the April natural gas contract was up 2.7 cents at US$1.83 per mmBTU.

The April gold contract was down US$1.40 at US$1,643.00 an ounce and the May copper contract was up 1.3 cents at US$2.59 a pound.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published March 4, 2020.