The Dow Jones industrial average rose 52.30 points, or 0.3%, to close at a record high of 15,387.58. Closely following it was the Standard & Poor’s 500 index, which rose 2.87 or 0.2%, to close at 1,669.16 after hitting a record high of 1,675. The Nasdaq composite rose 5.69, or 0.2%, to 3,502.12. The picture is set for a complete change when The Fed on Wednesday takes a final call on the ease out measures. The stock market is eagerly awaiting Chairman Ben Bernanke’s address to the Congress on the prospects of U.S. economy.
The sudden good performance of stocks could be attributed to James Bullard, head of the Fed’s St. Louis branch, assertions that the Fed should continue with its bond buying policy to keep the economy afloat. At a time when the market is seeking hints on the future of Fed’s bond buying program, such a statement played an important role in pushing up the indexes.
Stocks of Home Depot saw the best gain among 30 stocks in Dow Jones. It surged 2.5% to $78.71. The company saw its profits go up by 18% in the first quarter as the housing market continued to recover. J.P. Morgan Chase shares rose 1.4% to $53.02. Saks jumped 11% to $13.67 in regular trading and another 18% in after-hours trading after it was reported that the company had hired Goldman Sachs to explore chances of a sale. Embroiled in tax controversies, Apple’s shares dropped 0.7% to close at $439.66. Investors are keenly awaiting the outcome of CEO Tim Cook address to the Congress to defend the company’s tax policies.