Dow Jones industrial average marks best week since January
NEW YORK — Stocks rose broadly on Friday, giving the Dow Jones industrial average its best week since January.
The market got a lift from two economic reports, one showing that inflation remained tame in August and the other showing that Americans spent more at stores last month, albeit slightly.
The Dow rose 75.42 points, or 0.5 percent, to 15,376.06. The index closed up 3 percent for the week.
Intel led the Dow higher. Analysts at Jefferies & Co. said Intel may be able to increase its sales with power-efficient chips. Intel rose 81 cents, or 3.6 percent, to $23.44.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 4.57 points, or 0.3 percent, to 1,687.99. The Nasdaq composite index rose 6.22 points, or 0.2 percent, to 3,722.18.
Traders had a few economic reports to consider. Americans increased their spending modestly in August, roughly 0.2 percent, the Commerce Department reported. However, that was half of what economists expected.
The sales report was mixed. Shoppers spent more on cars, electronics and furniture, but they didn't buy much else. Last month, several retail chains including Nordstrom, Macy's and Wal-Mart cut their profit forecasts for the year.
The government also reported that wholesale prices rose 0.3 percent last month. Over the past year, prices have gained only 1.4 percent, a sign that inflation remains modest. One thing driving wholesale prices higher was energy, which spiked as tensions with Syria and the United States escalated.
Trading was light as Wall Street headed into the weekend and the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur.
Investors were looking ahead to the Federal Reserve's policy meeting on Sept. 17-18, when the central bank is expected to decide the future of its bond-buying program.
“There's a lot of ‘wait and see' going on until the Fed meeting next week,” said Frank Davis, director of sales and trading at LEK Securities.
September has been very strong for stocks so far. The Dow is up 3.8 percent and the S&P 500 has gained 3.4 percent.