Stocks soar, lifting Dow to 2nd straight high


NEW YORK -- Wall Street barreled higher Wednesday, propelling the Dow Jones industrials to their second straight record high close as investors shrugged off lackluster economic news and grew more optimistic that the Federal Reserve will lower interest rates as the economy cools. The Dow, the stock market's best known indicator, soared 123.27 to 11,850.61, according to preliminary calculations. It was only Tuesday that the 30 blue chip stocks finally reached a new closing high for the first time in nearly seven years. The Dow's record-setting day on Tuesday wiped out records that had stood since Jan. 14, 2000. The broader market indicators are still lagging as they try to recover from the turmoil that began with the dot-com bust early in the decade. Those indexes rose sharply Wednesday along with the Dow, which had a gain of 1.05%. The average rose up to 11,851.25, which stands as its current trading high. The Standard and Poor's 500 index was up 16.11, or 1.21%, at 1,350.22 and the Nasdaq composite index rose 47.30, or 2.11%, to 2,290.95. (AP)