U.S. stock indexes opened higher Thursday, supported by early reports that showed U.S. jobless claims in the latest week fell to 452,000 and orders for durable goods, excluding transportation, strengthened last month. S&P 500 rose 3 points to 1,123, led by gains in materials and financials sectors. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 24 points to 10,491. The Nasdaq Composite added 7 points to 2,276. Senate passed the historic health-care bill today. The healthcare stocks are modestly lower, but don't seem to be hurt by the bill. The techs in general keep pushing higher. Google and Apple are pushing to new highs while Research in Motion is lower once again. IBM is making a new high for the year this morning. The commodities are modestly higher. Fertilizer stock, Mosaic was downgraded, but the stock is higher. The financials are modestly higher. After the first hour the averages pushed higher. All three major averages are at new highs for the year. The markets are on cruise control. In the last hour (Noon to 1PM) the averages remained strong closing at new highs for the year. A nice Santa Claus rally. The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 50 points at 10520. The Dow rose 1.85% for the week. The S&P 500 rose 5 points to close at 1126, rising 2.18% on the week. The Nasdaq Composite rallied 16 points to close at 2285. The tech index rose 3.35% on the week.
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