Stock Market News for February 21st, 2014

Benchmarks moved up on Thursday as investors received a boost after a reading on manufacturing activity hit a four year high. Also, Facebook’s deal to buy WhatsApp and Tesla Motors’ strong results somewhat added to the positive sentiment. The gains on Thursday came despite weak data from China, Japan and Euro zone amidst a report of contraction in Philadelphia Fed’s gauge of manufacturing activity.

For a look at the issues currently facing the markets, make sure to read today’s Ahead of Wall Street article

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJI) gained 0.6% to close Thursday’s trading session at 16133.23. The Standard & Poor 500 (S&P 500) too moved up 0.6% to finish at 1839.78. The tech-laden Nasdaq Composite Index rose 0.7% to move up to 4267.55.  The fear-gauge CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) dropped 4.6% to settle at 14.79. Total volume on the New York Stock Exchange was 3.4 billion shares. Advancers outpaced the decliners on the NYSE. For 63% stocks that gained, 33% stocks closed lower on the NYSE.

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