S&P index passes 2,000 mark, ends at 1,997.92


Share
Posted Online: Aug. 25, 2014, 6:20 pm
Comment on this story | Print this story | Email this story
The Associated Press
Summer doldrums? Not on Wall Street.

The stock market notched another first on Monday as the Standard & Poor's 500 index nudged briefly past the 2,000-point mark and closed with its second record high in a week.

The move was the latest milestone in a five-year rally for U.S. stocks, which are enjoying a late-summer revival after dipping earlier this month on concerns about rising geopolitical tensions in Russia and the Middle East.

Investors have put aside those concerns for now, focusing instead on the improving outlook for the U.S. economy and the prospect of rising corporate earnings.

On Monday, traders were encouraged by some high-profile corporate deal news, which overshadowed sluggish sales of new homes.

News that Burger King is in talks to acquire doughnut chain Tim Hortons and create a new holding company headquartered in Canada had stocks pointing higher in premarket trading. That built on word over the weekend that California biotech company InterMune agreed to sell itself to Swiss pharmaceutical company Roche for $8.3 billion. Some other names in biotech got a boost from the deal.

Shortly after the market opened, the Commerce Department reported that sales of new homes slid 2.4 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 412,000. Homebuilder stocks declined, but the report didn't weigh down the broader market.

The S&P 500, a widely followed barometer of the U.S. stock market, crossed above 2,000 in the first hour of trading.

The index fluctuated above and below the milestone mark throughout the day and ended just below the 2,000 mark. The index closed above 1,000 points for the first time in February 1998.

"The index number itself is somewhat symbolic," said David Kelley, JPMorgan Funds' chief global strategist. "It's a continuation of what we've seen all year."

All told, the S&P 500 added 9.52 points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,997.92. It closed at a record last Thursday at 1,992.37.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 75.65 points, or 0.4 percent, to 17,076.87. The Nasdaq composite gained 18.80 points, or 0.4 percent, to 4,557.35.

The major U.S. indexes are riding a three-week streak of weekly gains and are up for the year.

Stocks, with support from the Federal Reserve's easy-money policies, have been on a bull run for more than five years after the market bottomed out during the Great Recession in March, 2009.

"Unless the story changes, the stock market is going to get pushed higher by the lack of potentially good returns elsewhere," Kelley said.

Corporate deals have been a recurring driver of the market this year. Investors seized on the trend on Monday, sending Burger King up 19.5 percent. The stock added $5.29 to $32.40.

Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note slipped to 2.38 percent from 2.40 percent late Friday.



















 



Local events heading








  Today is Monday, Sept. 22, the 265th day of 2014. There are 100 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: The board of education has granted Thursday as a holiday for the children, with the expectation that parents who desire to have their children attend the Scott County Fair will do so on that day and save irregularity the rest of the week.
1889 -- 125 years ago: The guard fence around the new cement walk at the Harper House has been removed. The blocks are diamond shape, alternating in black and white.
1914 -- 100 years ago: The Rev. R.B. Williams, former pastor of the First Methodist Church, Rock Island, was named superintendent of the Rock Island District.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Abnormally high temperatures and lack of rainfall in Illinois during the past week have speeded maturing of corn and soybean crops.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Installation of a new television system in St. Anthony's Hospital, which includes a closed circuit channel as well as the three regular Quad-Cities channels, has been completed and now is in operation.
1989 -- 25 years ago: When the new Moline High School was built in 1958, along with it were plans to construct a football field in the bowl near 34th Street on the campus. Wednesday afternoon, more than 30 years later, the Moline Board of Education Athletic Board sent the ball rolling toward the possible construction of that field by asking superintendent Richard Hennigan to take to the board of education a proposal to hire a consultant.






(More History)