US stocks close higher for 2nd day in a row

Associated Press


Stocks closed broadly higher as the market notched its second sizable gain in a row. Retail and industrial stocks made the biggest gains as they were lifted by company earnings, some good news from China’s economy, and hope that Japan’s struggling economy will get another boost.

Indexes were higher all day and almost matched the big gains they made Friday. Strong quarterly results gave some company stocks a boost and investors worried a bit less about China and Japan.

For a change, stocks traded higher even though the price of oil slumped. Investors were skeptical that OPEC nations will sign off on a deal to freeze production, so U.S. crude sank after a big rally Friday.

The Dow Jones industrial average added 222.57 points, or 1.4 percent, to 16,196.41. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 30.80 points, or 1.7 percent, to 1,895.58. The Nasdaq composite climbed 98.45 points, or 2.3 percent, to 4,435.96.

The S&P 500 had climbed 2 percent Friday. It had been two months since the S&P 500 rose at least 1 percent for two consecutive days. The U.S. market was closed Monday for the Presidents Day holiday.

ADT surged after the home security company accepted an offer from investment company Apollo Global Management worth $42 per share, or $6.94 billion. Its stock rose $12.77, or 47.5 percent, to $39.64. Apollo Global added 72 cents, or 5.4 percent, to $14.12.

Amazon rose $14.02, or 2.8 percent, to $521.10. Home Depot rose $3.11, or 2.7 percent, to $119.43 and competitor Lowe’s gained $2.56, or 3.9 percent, to $67.43.

Hormel, the maker of Spam and Dinty Moore stew, among other foods, had its best day in almost seven years after the company posted a stronger-than-expected quarterly profit and raised its forecast for the year. Its stock climbed $2.94, or 7.1 percent, to $44.44. It’s up 60 percent over the past year.

Restaurant Brands, the parent company of Burger King and Tim Hortons, jumped $1.81, or 5.7 percent, to $33.82 after the company said an important sales measurement rose at both of its chains in the fourth quarter.

Hospital stocks tumbled after Community Health Systems said admissions decreased in the fourth quarter. That’s partly because it had more patients last year with respiratory illnesses and the flu.

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