In this Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013, photo, Subaru Foresters are lined up at Twin City Subaru in Berlin, Vt. US stocks are rising April 2, 2013, as stronger auto sales and factory orders highlight strengthening economy(AP Photo/Toby Talbot)
U.S. stocks closed at a record highs Tuesday after reports on auto sales and factory orders provided the latest evidence that the U.S. economy is strengthening. Traders plowed money back into European stocks as the financial situation in Cyprus appeared to stabilize.
Health insurers powered the gains a day after the government released revised reimbursement rates for Medicare Advantage plans. The new numbers suggest that funding cuts will be less severe than analysts and companies had feared.
The Dow Jones industrial average closed up 89.16 points, or 0.6 percent, at 14,662.01. It had risen as high as 14,684 in the late morning.
The Dow broke through an all-time record on March 5. It has risen steadily since then, routinely setting new trading highs.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 8.08 points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,570.25. That eclipsed the index’s record closing high of 1,569.19 set Thursday. It rose to within two points of its intraday trading high of 1,576 reached on Oct. 11, 2007.
European markets closed sharply higher on the first trading day after a tense, four-day holiday weekend. Paris’ CAC-40 rose 2 percent, London’s FTSE 100 1.2 percent and Frankfurt’s DAX 1.9 percent.
The gains in Europe markets boosted Login to read more