Stocks Edge Higher on Encouraging Economic Signs

By  | 

New York, NY (AP) - Stocks are closing higher thanks to an
encouraging trade report and signs that a tax cut package will pass
the Senate.

The government reported Friday that the U.S. trade deficit fell
to its lowest level in nine months.

Treasury prices slid for another day. Economists expect the
tax-cut package to lead to economic growth and bigger budget
deficits. Both are negative for bonds.

According to preliminary calculations, the Dow Jones industrial
average rose 40, or 0.4 percent, to 11,410. The S&P 500 rose 7, or
0.6 percent, to 1,240. The Nasdaq composite index rose 21, or 0.8
percent, to 2,638.

Two stocks rose for every one that fell on the New York Stock
Exchange. Trading volume came to 975 million shares.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)