Relief over US debt ceiling, Fed lift Wall St for 4th day
NEW YORK (REUTERS) - Wall Street rose for a fourth straight session on Tuesday as Congress agreed to advance legislation extending US borrowing authority and the Federal Reserve's new chief held off from making any changes to its schedule for trimming stimulus.
The gains were broad, with all 10 S&P 500 sectors up for the day and about 75 per cent of New York Stock Exchange-traded stocks ending higher. About 67 per cent of Nasdaq-listed shares closed in positive territory, while the S&P 500 ended just 1.6 per cent away from its record closing high.
Republican leaders in the US House of Representatives caved in to demands by President Barack Obama and agreed to advance legislation increasing Washington's borrowing authority, removing a potential market headwind.
Fed Chair Janet Yellen emphasized continuity in the US central bank's policy strategy of cutting asset purchases by US$10 billion (S$12.68 billion) a month, saying she strongly supports the approach of her predecessor, Ben Bernanke. In her first public comments as Fed chief, Dr Yellen also said that while the US unemployment rate has fallen recently, labour market conditions needed to improve further.