Dow ends above 11,000 for first time in 18 months

08:29, April 13, 2010      

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Wall Street continued its slow rising momentum on Monday, with the Dow Jones industrial average ending above 11,000 for the first time in about 18 months, as a detailed Greece aid package eased worries in the market and investors were optimistic about the upcoming earnings season.

The Dow Jones industrial average added 8.62, or 0.08 percent, to 11,005.97. The Standard & Poor's 500 index climbed 2.11, or 0. 18 percent, to 1,196.48 and the Nasdaq inched up 3.82, or 0.16 percent, to 2,457.87.

Market sentiment was boosted on Monday as the eurozone nations agreed to provide a 30-billion-euro package for Greece over the weekend. Under the agreed upon terms, Greece would receive loans at the rate of 5 percent, which is significantly lower than current market rates.

The details helped to ease worries that have been one of the few drags on stocks so far this year. There have been concerns in recent months that mounting debt in Greece and other European nations like Spain and Portugal would stunt an economic recovery in Europe and undermine Europe's shared currency, the euro.

Investors' focus has turned to the new earnings season, which kicks off with Alcoa after the close of trading on Monday, the first of the Dow's 30 components to report results. Investors were expecting to see robust earnings and revenues from major companies, in order to be reassured that the wider economy was recovering.

Alcoa, the largest U.S. aluminum producer, reported right after the closing bell that the company lost 201 million dollars, or 20 cents per share, during the first three months in 2010. The number was better than a loss of 497 million dollars in the same period a year ago, but lower than analysts' expectations.

With major indexes trading at new 18-month highs, many analysts warned that the market has been overbought at the moment. Karen Finerman, co-founder and president of Metropolitan Capital Advisors, said on CNBC that she was not surprised if the market is little boosted or even down as more robust earnings are coming in, since most of them have been already factored in after the recent rally.



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