Gain in home prices lifts stocks; S&P near high

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Associated Press

Posted on March 26, 2013 at 10:00 PM

Updated Tuesday, Mar 26 at 10:02 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — The Standard & Poor's 500 index closed within a short reach of its all-time high on Tuesday. Rising home prices and orders for manufactured goods drove stocks up from the opening bell.

The S&P 500 index rose 12.08 points, or 0.8 percent, to close at 1,563.77. That's less than two points from the peak it reached on Oct. 9, 2007, before a recession and ensuing financial crisis battered markets.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 111 points, or 0.8 percent, to close at 14,559. It was the biggest gain in three weeks.

The Nasdaq composite rose 17 points, 0.5 percent, to 3,252.

Housing prices rose in January at the fastest pace since summer 2006, before the housing bubble burst. The Standard & Poor's/Case-Shiller index climbed 8.1 percent.

Two stocks rose for every one that fell on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume was lighter than usual, 2.8 billion shares.

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