CLOSING BELL: June 19: DJIA: 12,837.33 | UP 95.51 | +.75%
OIL: $84.03, UP .76, +.91%
GOLD: $1,623.20, DOWN 3.80, -.23%
GASOLINE (US Avg): $3.497, -.008
Chris Dieterich, WSJ – Speculation that U.S. central bankers are set to unveil additional stimulus measures lifted the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index for the fourth session in a row, as tensions eased across Europe’s financial markets.
The S&P 500 rose 13.20 points, or 1%, to 1357.98 on Tuesday, giving the benchmark its longest winning streak since May.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average tacked on 95.51 points, or 0.8%, to 12837.33, closing just short of its fourth triple-digit gain in six sessions.
Materials stocks led Tuesday’s rally. Financials followed closely behind after federal housing regulators said they were revising guidelines that could reduce lenders’ risks of having to buy back soured mortgages.
Bank of America BAC +4.51% jumped to lead the Dow’s advance.
Microsoft, MSFT +2.88% also a Dow component, jumped after the software company unveiled its Surface tablet computer that will compete with Apple’s AAPL +0.28% iPad.
The Nasdaq Composite rose 34.43 points, or 1.2%, to 2929.76. The technology-heavy Nasdaq rose for the fourth session in a row, its longest streak of gains since February.
The Federal Reserve’s policy-setting committee convened a two-day meeting on Tuesday. with a series of statements and forecasts scheduled to begin at around midday on Wednesday.
Tuesday’s rally was based “generally on enthusiasm for, and hope that, the Fed might say something market friendly tomorrow,” said Steve Sosnick, equity risk manager for Timber Hill.
Investors will be watching closely for hints that the central bank is prepared to intervene again in the U.S. economy, perhaps through additional purchases of government securities, or a variation of an existing program set up to extend maturities of the central bank’s bond holdings.
“Markets will be disappointed if they do nothing,” said Paul Simon, chief investment officer at Tactical Allocation Group in Birmingham, Mich.
In U.S. economic news, home building slowed in May but new permits reached their highest level since 2008, suggesting future demand for new houses.