U.S. stocks edged slightly higher after Tuesday's start, tentatively extending gains into a second day, as a healthy rise in U.S. retail sales in August helped lift investor sentiment. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 10 points to 9,637. The S&P 500 Index added a point to 1,050 and the Nasdaq Composite gained 3 points to 2,095. The retail sector looks good except for Best Buy which is down a percent after missing earnings estimates. Netflix is up 2% on an upgrade. The dog of the day goes to Kroger down 7% after missing earnings by 5 cents. The tech stocks are performing well. Ebay, Apple, Xerox, Yahoo, and Seagate are all higher on upgrades. Other upgrades this morning include Aetna, Carnival, and Norfolk Southern. The financials opened higher, then sold off. Citigroup is lower on news they want to raise more money to pay off part of the government's position. After the first half an hour, the rally fizzled. The Dow dropped as much as 40 points into the red, but it didn't last. Through the morning the averages hovered around the unchanged level. Fed Chairman Bernanke declared the recession is over. That's good. In the afternoon, the averages crept into the green. Within the Dow, Caterpillar is up 5%, GE is up 4%, and DuPont is up 2%. In the last hour the Dow rose 80 points above 9700 before pulling back into the close. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 56 points at 9,683. The Nasdaq Composite gained 10 points to 2,102 while the S&P 500 gained 3 points to close 1,052. Today was the highest closes for the Dow and S&P 500 since October 6th of last year.
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