Dow Settles Off Session Highs; S&P 500 Up
LOS ANGELES (MarketWatch ) — U.S. blue-chip stocks closed higher Wednesday, with modest gains following upbeat data on private-sector job growth and activity in the services sector. “Stocks [drifted] slightly higher mostly from a lack of sellers in this liquidity-driven market. With rates so low, stocks win by default,” said Keith Springer, president of Springer Financial Advisors in Sacramento, Calif. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 12.25 points, or 0.1%, to 13,494.61, with shares of Home Depot Inc. topping advancers. Blue-chips fell into the red during the session, hurt in part by a plunge in shares of Hewlett-Packard Co. after the company issued a weak yearly forecast. The S&P 500 Index logged its third day of gains, ending up by 5.24 points, or 0.4%, at 1,450.99. The Nasdaq Composite Index finished up 15.19 points, or 0.5%, at 3,135.23.