By Dow Jones Business News, October 09, 2013, 04:22:00 PM EDT
MARKET SNAPSHOT: Dow, S&P 500 Eke Out Gains On Hope For Budget Deal
By Kate Gibson, MarketWatch
NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- U.S. stocks ended mostly up on Wednesday, with the Dow industrials and the S&P 500
rebounding after a two-day hit, buoyed by talks to end the government shutdown now in its ninth day and with little
more than a week to go before U.S. borrowing authority expires.
"I think we're getting a glimmer of hope," said Art Hogan, a market strategist at Lazard Capital Markets LLC. "There
seems to be a conversation going in the background that the way to exit this mess is a short-term lifting of the debt
ceiling, and as a reward, an agreement for both sides to sit down and discuss budget issues," he added.
House leaders from both parties met on Wednesday. In addition, President Barack Obama will meet with House Republican
leaders and committee chairmen, according to a statement from House Speaker John Boehner's spokesman.
The stock market offered little reaction to the Federal Reserve's release of minutes from its September meeting, at
which the Fed unexpectedly refrained from tapering its $85 billion in monthly asset purchases. The minutes showed most
Fed members think it would still make sense to scale back bond buying this year. Janet Yellen, vice chairwoman of the
Federal Reserve, was nominated Wednesday afternoon to succeed Ben Bernanke as Fed chief.
After a 52-point drop and 76-point advance, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) finished up 26.45 points, or 0.2%,
The S&P 500 index (SPX) rose nearly 1 point, or nearly 0.1%, to 1,656.40, with telecommunications the best performing
and consumer discretionary the laggard among its 10 major industry sectors.
Darden Restaurants Inc. ( DRI ) shares jumped 7.1%. The Wall Street Journal, citing people familiar with the matter,
reported hedge fund Barington Capital LP had taken a 2.8% stake in the owner of the Olive Garden and Red Lobster
restaurants, and was pushing for Darden to split.
Shares of Hewlett-Packard Co. ( HPQ ) rallied 8.9% after Chief Executive Meg Whitman said the company is poised to see "
pockets of growth" in 2014.
Alcoa Inc. ( AA ) rose 2% a day after the aluminum producer reported better-than-anticipated quarterly earnings. (Read
more on Alcoa results: http://blogs.marketwatch.com/thetell/2013/10/08/what-alcoas-results-say-about-global-
Shares of Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc. ( JOSB ) and Men's Wearhouse Inc. ( MW ) rallied after Men's Wearhouse spurned the
former's buyout offer.
The Nasdaq Composite (RIXF) declined 17.06 points, or 0.5%, to 3,677.78.
Decliners just outpaced advancers on the New York Stock Exchange, where 732 million shares traded. Composite volume
approached 3.6 billion shares.
U.S. stocks fell sharply in the last two sessions, with the S&P 500 ending Tuesday at the lowest level since Sept. 6,
hit by worries about the government shutdown and looming debt-ceiling deadline.
"I wish I could be watching earnings and economic data, but the goofiness in Washington is pretty much taking all the
air out of the room," said Paul Nolte, managing director at Dearborn Partners.
"The market is starting to slowly price in a chance of default; we don't pay our bills, everybody takes a look at the
U.S. a little differently at that point. That's part of why I think we'll get a deal, but it's politics not finance,"
said Nolte, who believes the stock market could drop as much as 10% should politicians fail to hike the nation's debt
ceiling before an Oct. 17 deadline.
Treasury prices fell, with the yield on the 10-year note (10_YEAR) used in figuring mortgages and other consumer loans
up 3 basis points at 2.667%.
The dollar(DXY) gained against the currencies of major U.S. trading partners, including the yen (USDJPY) and the euro
(EURUSD), while the price of dollar-denominated commodities declined, with oil futures off $1.88, or 1.8%, at $101.61 a
barrel and gold futures down $17.40, or 1.3%, to close the floor session at $1,307.20 an ounce.
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