Remarks by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke reinforced hopes of an interest rate cut pushing the major indices higher. The Dow surged another 119 points to 13,431 while Nasdaq added 18 points to 2686.
On the upside
Ed Zander stepped down as CEO of Motorola (NYSE: MOT) while retaining the chairman position. The cell phone maker was losing sales momentum over the past year.
Shares of Tiffany (NYSE: TIF) rose after the New York jewelry retailer reported profit that more than tripled while raising its outlook for the current quarter.
Subprime homeowners hoped for legislative relief to freeze interest rates before they adjust higher. The financial services sector rebounded with shares of Wells Fargo (NYSE: WFC) climbing higher.
On the downside
Dell (Nasdaq: DELL) posted higher profits on cost-cutting and higher revenues, but the results missed analysts' expectations.
Investors sold off on Big Lots (NYSE: BIG) after the discount retailer lowered its profit and revenue targets for the current quarter due to declining same-store sales.
U.S. intelligence agencies may be trying to block 3Com's (Nasdaq: COMS) acquisition of a networking equipment company that includes a 20% stake in a China-based company.
In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 5 to 1 on the NYSE and by 3 to 1 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks surged 13 points to 779.