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U.S. stocks were little changed as new record in Apple Inc. shares and a rebound in financial companies tempered valuation concern after the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index rallied to the highest level since June 2008.
Banks in the S&P 500 rose 0.5 percent for the fourth- biggest gain among 24 industries. After the close of trading, the Fed said 15 of 19 banks would be able to maintain capital levels above a regulatory minimum in an “extremely adverse” economic scenario, even while continuing to pay dividends and repurchasing stock.
Transportation stocks had the biggest decline in the S&P 500 among 24 industries, falling 1.2 percent. The group is considered a proxy for economic growth. The Fed said yesterday that strains in global financial markets have eased and the labor market is gathering strength, adding to speculation that it will refrain from additional stimulus.
Dow 13,182.67 +4.99 +0.04%, Nasdaq 3,031.08 -8.80 -0.29%, S&P 500 1,391.35 -4.60 -0.33%
Bank of America (ВАС) added 4.5 percent to $8.87. Zions Bancorporation soared 11 percent to $21.62. Regions Financial Corp. jumped 8 percent to $6.23. Citigroup slumped 2.9 percent to $35.40. MetLife fell 4.9 percent to $37.55.
Apple climbed 4.1 percent to $591.19, rising for a sixth day. The world’s largest technology company had its share price estimate raised to $720 from $515 at Morgan Stanley.
Cliffs Natural Resources Inc. jumped 9.7 percent to $71.18. The largest U.S. iron-ore producer more than doubled its dividend and said it’s refocusing on the execution of expansion projects.
Gold producers tumbled as speculation that an economic recovery will curb demand for the metal. Gold has surged more than 85 percent since December 2008 as the Fed held U.S. borrowing costs at a record low and bought $2.3 trillion in housing and government debt during two rounds of so-called quantitative easing. Newmont Mining Corp., the largest U.S. gold producer, dropped 1.6 percent to $54.
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