Stocks Close Higher; S&P Turns Positive for 2011

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

New York, NY (AP) - Stocks are closing higher after a quiet, pre-holiday session that left the S&P 500 positive for the year.

Traders were relieved Friday by news that Congress had extended a payroll tax holiday for workers and emergency unemployment benefits. The programs were set to expire at the end of the year. Economists say letting that happen would have reduced economic growth by about 1 percent.

The S&P 500 closed up 11 points, or 0.9 percent, at 1,265. It started the year at 1,257.

The Dow finished up 124 points, or 1 percent, at 12,294. The Nasdaq closed up 19, or 0.7 percent, at 2,619.

Two shares rose for every one that fell on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume was about half of the recent average, 2.2 billion shares.

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  • by Gerry Location: Tallahassee on Dec 24, 2011 at 06:48 AM
    The recession began in December of 2007 and ended in June of 2009. There were previously long recessions post WW II in 1973-1975 and 1981-1982. The National Bureau of Economic Research determines when recessions begin and end. This recent recession was the longest, 18 months, in the post WW II era. The other 2 recessions I mentioned were both 16 months in duration.
  • by Susan Location: Valdosta on Dec 23, 2011 at 04:29 PM
    The recovery has begun. Thank you Mr. President. Such a deep and serious recession took some time to end. It doesn't happen overnight. Lets not go back to those failed policies. Or, do we easily forget?
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