Closing Market Report

Star-Bulletin news services

Monday, March 15, 1999

Dow up 82 to
close above 9,900

NEW YORK -- The Dow Jones industrial average bounded to a record close today but stopped short of the 10,000-point milestone as a new round of corporate mergers sent stock prices higher.

The Dow closed up 82.42 at 9,958.77, less than 42 points from 10,000. The index of blue-chip stocks, which has flirted with its next milestone in recent sessions, came within 30 points today before giving up ground. "The market appears to be tiptoeing toward Dow 10,000," said Alan Ackerman, senior vice president at Fahnestock & Co. "But we could reach that mark at any time."

Advancers barely beat decliners on the New York Stock Exchange, with 1,529 up, 1,436 down and 577 unchanged. NYSE volume came to 730 million shares, well off Friday's 821.46 million shares.

The Nasdaq composite index, driven by technology issues, rose 49.91 at 2,431.44. The Standard & Poor's 500 index was up 12.67 at 1,307.26, also a record. The NYSE composite index gained 3.68 at 615.22; the American Stock Exchange composite index slipped 0.30 at 720.91; and the Russell 2000 index rose 2.46 to end at 400.84.

The 30-year Treasury bond rose 1/4 point, or $2.50 per $1,000 bond, driving down its yield down to 5.50 percent from 5.52 percent late yesterday.

Stocks rallied sharply overnight in Japan, as the Nikkei reached its highest level since last summer, rising 2 percent.

European markets, however, were mixed. Germany's DAX index closed 0.2 percent higher, Britain's FTSE 100 fell 1.2 percent and France's CAC-40 rose 0.2 percent.

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