Markets

Closing Update: Stocks Rebound As Consumer Confidence Rises; Broad-Based Rally Lifts Dow, S&P 500 Over 1% Higher

Stocks rose broadly Tuesday, recovering from two days of declines after a measure of consumer confidence recorded a better-than-expected rise this month and energy prices firmed as more seasonal weather conditions replaced above-average temperatures throughout much of the nation.

Consumer confidence as measured by the Conference Board rose to a final 96.5 December reading, up from an upwardly revised 92.6 reading last month and beating market expectations for an increase to a 93.5 reading. Also today, the Case Shiller house price index rose 0.8% during October from an upwardly revised 0.5% gain the previous month.

All 10 industry sectors in the S&P 500 advanced, lifting the index to a two-week high, while both the Nasdaq Composite index and the Dow Jones Industrial Average also climbed more than 1% today. Technology and health care stocks paced today's gains, while shares of utility and energy companies trailed the other industry sectors on the leader board despite today's recovery for crude oil and natural gas prices .

Crude oil for February delivery settled $1.06 higher at $37.87 per barrel while February natural gas futures rose 11 cents to $2.37 per 1 million BTU. February gold slipped 30 cents to $1,068 per ounce while March copper climbed 6 cents to finish at $2.14 per pound.

Here's where the U.S. markets stood at the end-of-day:

Dow Jones Industrial Average up 192.71 (+1.10%) to 17,720.98

S&P 500 up 21.86 (+1.06%) to 2,078.36

Nasdaq Composite Index up 66.95 (+1.33%) to 5,107.94

GLOBAL SENTIMENT

Hang Seng Index up 0.36%

Shanghai China Composite Index up 0.85%

FTSE 100 Index up 0.96%

UPSIDE MOVERS

(+) WSH, Selected to join S&P 500 index, replacing Fossil ( FOSL ) after the Jan. 4 market close.

(+) ASTI, Federal regulators issue the second patent related to the company's solar manufacturing process.

(+) SCYX, WBB Securities begins analyst coverage with a Speculative Buy rating and an $8 price target.

DOWNSIDE MOVERS

(-) COWN, Buys 75% stake in Builders Reinsurance SA for $467.1 mln. Company will be renamed Hollenfels Re SA for the village in Luxenbourg where the company has been based. Deal also includes option to acquire remaining 25% ownership position.

(-) SUNE, Revised terms for SUNE's buyout of Vevint Systems ( VSLR ) "reiterates concerns" on Q1 cash liquidity and intensifies the "focus on SUNE assumptions of margin achievable at its DevCo and services businesses," according to new research note issued today by UBS.

(-) AVXL, Receives SEC subpoena on Dec. 22, with the agency beginning formal investigation into unusual trading of AVXL stock recently. The company's is cooperating with the probe.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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