Starbucks, the world’s largest coffee-shop operator, advanced 4.1 percent. Procter & Gamble, the biggest consumer- products maker, climbed 4 percent as it also raised its 2013 earnings forecast. Halliburton (HAL) Co. jumped 5.1 percent as profit exceeded estimates. Apple Inc. surrendered the title of the world’s most-valuable company to Exxon Mobil Corp. as the iPhone maker slumped 2.4 percent.
The S&P 500 added 0.5 percent to 1,502.96 in New York. The benchmark gauge closed above 1,500 for the first time since December 2007 and gained for eight straight days, the longest string of advances since November 2004. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 70.65 points, or 0.5 percent, to 13,895.98 today. About 6.3 billion shares traded hands on U.S. exchanges today, in line with the three-month average.
“Day to day, it is earnings-driven at this point,” Tom Wirth, who helps manage $1.6 billion as senior investment officer for Chemung Canal Trust Co., in Elmira, New York, said by telephone. “There’s a point in time where the market has gone up for so long, so much, that it’s got to take some period of time to consolidate those gains before it goes again.”
The S&P 500 climbed for the fourth straight week, advancing 1.1 percent since Jan. 18. The measure failed to close above 1,500 yesterday after surpassing that level intraday.
The benchmark index has more than doubled from a 12-year low in 2009 as corporate earnings have increased for three years and the Federal Reserve expanded its bond purchases to keep interest rates low to spur growth. The S&P 500 is about 4 percent below its all-time high of 1,565.15 set in October 2007.
Stocks rose today as German business confidence increased more than forecast in January, adding to signs that Europe’s largest economy is recovering. The European Central Bank said banks will next week repay more of its emergency three-year loans than economists forecast, in another sign the euro region’s debt crisis is abating. Equities briefly pared gains as data showed purchases of new U.S. homes unexpectedly dropped in December.