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N.Y. stocks rally, Dow hits over 4-yr high on hopes for U.S. economy.

NEW YORK, March 13 Kyodo

New York stocks rallied Tuesday, with the Dow index rising for the fifth straight trading day to close at its highest level in about four years and three months on growing hopes of a U.S. economic recovery.

The 30-issue Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 217.97 points, or 1.68 percent, to end at 13,177.68, the highest finish since December 2007. The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 56.22 points, or 1.88 percent, to 3,039.88, the highest since November 2000.

Stocks drew across-the-board buying as investors were encouraged by U.S. retail sales data for February and the Federal Reserve's statement issued after a one-day meeting of its policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee, market analysts said.

The U.S. Commerce Department said retail sales last month posted the largest gain in five months, while the Fed said in the statement that labor market conditions, household spending and business investment have continued to improve.

The announcement by JPMorgan Chase & Co. of an increase in its quarterly stock dividend fueled buying of financial issues, the analysts added.
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Publication:Japan Weekly Monitor
Geographic Code:1U2NY
Date:Mar 19, 2012
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