NEW YORK -- Stocks thrived in the new interest rate environment today, shooting to new record highs as investors expressed confidence that the U.S. economy can continue to grow without runaway inflation.
42.74 to record
The Dow Jones industrial average was up 42.74 at 11,326.04, topping the previous record close of 11,299.76, set Monday.
Broader stock indicators were also higher. The Nasdaq composite index, which lists most of the nation's leading technology companies, rose 53.23, or nearly 2 percent, to close at 2,805.60. It was the Nasdaq's fourth straight session and is edging back toward its July 16 record close of 2,864.48. The Standard & Poor's 500 rose 18.29 to 1,381.79. So far in 1999, the Dow is up 23 percent; the S&P 500 is 12.4 percent higher and the Nasdaq is up nearly 28 percent.
Advancers led decliners today by a 10-to-9 margin on the New York Stock Exchange, with 1,610 up, 1,382 down and 517 unchanged. NYSE volume totaled 850.05 million shares vs. 724.19 yesterday.
The NYSE composite index gained 6.08 to close at 639.96; the American Stock Exchange composite slipped 3.54 to 785.88; and the Russell 2000 index of smaller companies rose 0.74 to 437.86.
After being mixed for most of the morning, stocks moved higher as bond prices rose, pushing the yield on the 30-year Treasury bond down to 5.85 percent, its lowest level in almost three months. Yesterday's rate increase -- and the Fed's suggestion that inflation may be successfully contained in the coming months -- sent some bond investors back to stocks.