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Stocks End the Week With Record Gains  12/09 15:49

   U.S. stocks rose for the sixth day in a row Friday as major indexes 
continued to set records. The biggest gains went to companies that have been 
mostly left out of the post-election rally, including health care companies and 
makers of household goods.

   NEW YORK (AP) -- U.S. stocks rose for the sixth day in a row Friday as major 
indexes continued to set records. The biggest gains went to companies that have 
been mostly left out of the post-election rally, including health care 
companies and makers of household goods.

   Stocks were solidly higher throughout the day and jumped an hour before the 
close of trading. Coca-Cola and Pfizer both gained 2.5 percent. Investors have 
mostly avoided consumer goods makers and health companies in recent weeks. 
Instead they've bought banks and machinery companies, which could benefit more 
from a faster-growing economy.

   "What we're seeing today is investors who are fearful they'll be left 
behind," said Kate Warne, investment strategist for Edward Jones. "So it may 
not be surprising that they're buying less aggressive stocks and sectors."

   The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 142.04 points, or 0.7 percent, to 
19,756.85. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 13.34 points, or 0.6 percent, 
to 2,259.53. The Nasdaq composite gained 27.14 points, or 0.5 percent, to 
5,444.50. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks edged up 1.71 
points, or 0.1 percent, to 1,388.07.

   The S&P 500's six-day winning streak is its longest in two and a half years.

   Among household goods companies, PepsiCo gained $1.42, or 1.4 percent, to 
$103.57. Energy drink maker Monster Beverage also rose, as did drugstore chains 
CVS and Walgreens.

   Coca-Cola climbed as investors reacted positively to the company's CEO 
transition plans. Coke said Muhtar Kent will give up his CEO title in May, and 
Chief Operating Officer James Quincey, a 20-year veteran of the company, will 
become CEO.

   Drug companies bounced back from their recent losses. Those stocks, 
especially biotechnology companies, were hit hard this week after 
President-elect Donald Trump said he wants to reduce drug prices. Bristol-Myers 
Squibb gained $1.81, or 3.3 percent, to $57.04 and Botox maker Allergan rose 
$3.78, or 2 percent, to $192.25.

   Overall, health care companies are nearly flat since Nov. 8.

   Technology stocks rose for the sixth consecutive day and completed their 
best week in a year. They've slightly lagged the market since Election Day. 
Chipmaker Broadcom rose $8.38, or 4.9 percent, to $179.09 after reporting 
earnings that were far above expectations. The company also doubled its 
quarterly dividend. Apple gained $1.83, or 1.6 percent, to $113.95. Google 
parent Alphabet reversed its post-election losses and picked up $14.28, or 1.8 
percent, to $809.45.

   U.S. government bond prices slipped again. The yield on the 10-year Treasury 
note inched up to 2.47 percent, its highest in about 18 months, from 2.41 
percent late Thursday. That yield is used to set interest rates on many kinds 
of loans including mortgages.

   Next week the Federal Reserve will meet for the last time in 2016. Investors 
expect the central bank to raise its key interest rate, and Wall Street will 
look for clues about the Fed's plans for future interest rates.

   "They're hoping that the Fed continues with the current message: that 
they'll be patient, that they're watching the economy, and that they see the 
risks as balanced," said Warne.

   Banks made small gains. The S&P 500 financial index has climbed 18.5 percent 
since Nov. 9, twice as much as any other sector. The S&P 500 overall is up 3.1 
percent. Banks are trading at their highest prices since early 2008.

   Benchmark U.S. crude oil jumped 66 cents, or 1.3 percent, to $51.50 a barrel 
in New York. Brent crude, the international standard, added 44 cents to $54.33 
a barrel in London.

   Gold lost $10.50 to $1,161.90 an ounce. Silver fell 13 cents to $16.97 an 
ounce. Copper picked up 2 cents to $2.65 per pound. Gold reached a 10-month low 
Friday, and that helped pull mining companies lower. Basic materials makers 
also struggled.

   In other energy trading, wholesale gasoline was little changed at $1.51 a 
gallon. Heating oil picked up 1 cent to $1.64 a gallon. Natural gas gained 5 
cents, or 1.4 percent, to $3.75.

   European stocks had an even stronger week than their U.S. counterparts after 
the European Central Bank said it will spend another $579 billion to stimulate 
the economy by buying bonds, but said it will buy slightly smaller amounts of 
bonds each month. It said the danger of deflation, which damages growth, had 
passed.

   The blue-chip Euro Stoxx 50 jumped 6 percent for the week. Germany's DAX 
rose 0.2 percent Friday and finished the week up 6.6 percent. The CAC 40 in 
France rose 0.6 percent and the British FTSE 100 added 0.3 percent.

   The dollar jumped to 115.23 yen from 114.07 yen. The euro fell to $1.0551 
from $1.0613.

   Japan's Nikkei 225 gained 1.2 percent as the yen fell. The weaker yen is 
good news for Japanese exporters. Among other Asian indexes, Hong Kong's Hang 
Seng index fell 0.4 percent.

   South Korea's Kospi index slid 0.3 percent after legislators voted to 
impeach President Park Geun-hye over a corruption scandal. She has denied 
allegations she colluded with a confidante who extorted companies and 
manipulated state affairs. South Korea's prime minister will lead the country 
until a high court rules if Park must resign. 


(KA)

 
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