Traders work on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange in New York, Wednesday, Oct. 16, 2013. Stocks are surging on Wall Street after Senate leaders reached a deal that would avoid a U.S. default and reopen the government after 16 days of being partially shut down. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig)
NEW YORK (AP) — Wall Street finally got the deal it’s been waiting for.
A last-minute agreement to keep the U.S. from defaulting on its debt and reopen the government sent the stock market soaring Wednesday, lifting the Standard & Poor’s 500 index close to a record high.
The deal was reached just hours before a deadline to raise the nation’s $16.7 trillion debt limit. Senate leaders agreed to extend government borrowing through Feb. 7 and to fund the government through Jan. 15.
The agreement follows a month of political gridlock that threatened to make America a deadbeat and derail global markets, which depend on the U.S. to pay its bills. American government debt is widely considered the world’s safest investment.
Markets stayed largely calm throughout the drama in Washington, with the S&P 500 actually gaining 2.4 percent since the shutdown began Oct. 1, after House Republicans demanded changes to President Barack Obama’s health care law before passing a budget.
Wall Street gambled that politicians wouldn’t let the U.S. default, a calamity economists said could paralyze lending and push the economy Login to read more