December 19, 2014
Jobs drive Dow, S&P 500 to records in short session
Wall Street's holiday-shortened session ended with multiple records today, with the Dow topping 17,000 for the first time after the June jobs report came in much stronger than expected.
Both the Dow and S&P 500 ended at their third consecutive record highs. The Nasdaq ended at its highest since 2000 and rose for a third straight week. The three major indexes wrapped up a week of solid gains on the day before the Independence Day holiday, when the US stock market will be closed.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 92.02 points or 0.54 percent, to 17,068.26. The S&P 500 gained 10.82 points or 0.55 percent, to 1,985.44. The Nasdaq Composite added 28.19 points or 0.63 percent, to 4,485.93.
For the week, the Dow rose 1.3 percent, the S&P 500 advanced 1.25 percent and the Nasdaq climbed 2 percent. With the week's gains, the Nasdaq has gained for seven of the past eight weeks, rising more than 10 percent over that period.
The Dow is underperforming other major indexes so far this year, with blue chips up about 3 percent in 2014. Both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq have gained more than 7 percent.
About 55 percent of stocks traded on the New York Stock Exchange ended higher, while 64 percent of Nasdaq-listed stocks closed in positive territory.
Volume was extremely light in the shortened session, with only 3.49 billion shares traded on all US platforms, according to BATS exchange data. The five-day average is 6.29 billion.
European shares headed back towards multi-year highs, as a jump in US employment growth and further signs of support from the European Central Bank (ECB) lifted equities.
The pan-European FTSEurofirst 300 index closed up around 1 percent at 1,398.24 points, a whisker away from the 6-1/2 year high of 1,399.62 points reached in late June.
The euro zone's blue-chip Euro STOXX 50 index rose 1.2 percent to 3,289.75 points while Germany's DAX advanced 1.2 percent to 10,029.43 points - close to a record high of 10,050.98 points hit last month.
European stock markets extended earlier gains after data showed that US employment growth rose in June and the jobless rate had closed in on a six-year low.
The ECB also helped the mood, as it held interest rates at record lows.