Two of three major indexes hit highest levels since 2008
December 16th, 2010
08:32 PM ET

Two of three major indexes hit highest levels since 2008

A look at higlights from the day's business news headlines:

Stocks hit 2-year highs 
Stocks closed at two-year highs Thursday, with two of the three major indexes hitting their highest levels since September 2008. Investors looked on the brighter side of mixed reports on housing and jobs that came out before the opening bell.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed 41 points higher, or less than 0.4%, to end at 11,499.25 - the highest close since Sept. 8, 2008. The S&P 500 gained 8 points, or 0.6%, to 1,242.87, its highest closing level since Sept. 19, 2008. The tech-heavy Nasdaq rose 20 points, or 0.8%.

Gains were broad-based in the Dow, with 25 of its 30 components closing higher.

Despite Thursday's mixed reports, economic data have been relatively upbeat lately. Stocks have performed well in December so far, with the three
major indexes up 2% to almost 4%.

Treasuries yields drop on mixed economic data 
Bond prices ticked higher Thursday after the government released mixed economic reports and Congress continued its march toward extending tax cuts.

"There has been a preponderance of selling in the past few weeks. I think right now the market seems to be taking somewhat of a breather," said Kenneth Naehu, managing director and head of fixed income at Bel Air Investment Advisors.

Bond prices fell early in the trading session after government reports on unemployment insurance and new housing starts were released

The number of people filing for initial unemployment benefits fell 3,000 to 420,000 in the latest week, the Labor Department said. But continuing claims - those workers who have filed unemployment claims for their second week or more - were up 22,000 to 4.13 million.

Meanwhile, government figures showed housing starts ticked up to a 555,000 annual rate in November, better than the 545,000 starts that economists were expecting, and 3.9% above revised October figures.

– reporters Julianne Pepitone and Charles Riley contributed to this report.

Filed under: Economy
soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. woower

    You ain't seen nothin' yet!

    December 16, 2010 at 9:13 pm | Report abuse |
  2. banasy

    Are you using musical song refences, woower? In that case, "Two Out Of Three Ain't Bad!

    December 16, 2010 at 10:56 pm | Report abuse |
  3. ***dude***

    Ok, 'mmmmmmm, alright, backman turner overdrive 'n meatloaf. What did I win?

    December 17, 2010 at 1:58 am | Report abuse |
  4. Myrderbeachmohican

    Bad day when the war on drugs makes a condemned man have to suffer!
    kill em all let the dogs sort em out

    December 17, 2010 at 3:31 am | Report abuse |
  5. Richard in Texas

    Republicans in the senate finally voted for something. See good things can happen when you vote rather than just say no or fillibuster.

    December 17, 2010 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  6. banasy

    You win my admiration! And it's "Bachman", btw.
    Not to nitpick, or anything! 😉

    December 17, 2010 at 3:50 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Veritas

    Every positive step forward no matter how small is still a step in the right direction. Thank you Mr. Obama NO THANKS TO mr bushwhacker.

    December 17, 2010 at 3:52 pm | Report abuse |