Indices set for best weekly performance this year

With a number of positive sessions this week, including Tuesday’s Yellen-inspired surge, all three major US stock benchmarks are on track for their best week in 2014 so far.

With just over half an hour to the close on Wall Street, the Dow Jones was up 0.81% or 129 points at 16,157, the S&P 500 added 0.53% to stand just over 10 points from its all-time high and the NASDAQ 100 rose 0.14%. This caps a solid end to a solid week for the stock market ahead of Monday’s stock market closure for Presidents’ Day.

There are some niggling doubts arising from recent softness in economic data, but this really could just be a blip from the weather. The market will be factoring some drag into first-quarter GDP, but based on stock prices, it is clear that investors still believe the big trend for the economy is upwards on onwards.

Within the context of that big picture, this week’s accord between lawmakers in Washington on the issue of the debt-limit is a more weighty positive than a the intermittent weakness in this week’s economic reports. We’ve had a strong earnings season, showing that corporate America is in fine fettle, and that’s why investors have been buying the dips. 

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