Dow closes above 9,600; Industrials gain 105 points; S&P; 500 and Nasdaq also rise to records


NEW YORK -- U.S. stocks rose yesterday, sending the Dow Jones industrial average to its first close above 9,600, after the government said unemployment is at a 28-year low. Alcoa Inc., automakers and other companies that thrive during economic expansions led the gains.

The Dow rose 105.56, or 1.1 percent, to finish at 9,643.32. The Standard & Poor's 500 index gained 5.36, to 1,275.09, led by AT&T; Corp., and the Nasdaq composite index jumped 18.32, to 2,344.41. All three measures closed at records, though declining shares were about matched with advancers on the New York Stock Exchange.

The Wilshire 5,000 gained 62.73, to 11,702.09, its third record this week; the Russell 2,000 index of small-cap stocks rose 3.40, to 431.23; and the American Stock Exchange composite index advanced 3.78, to 707.76. The S&P; 400 midcap index slid 0.68, to 391.16.

The Sun-Bloomberg Maryland index of the top 100 Maryland stocks gained 1.89, to 244.60.

More than 937 million shares changed hands on the NYSE, its ninth-busiest day ever. On the Nasdaq stock market, 1.2 billion shares traded, making yesterday the fifth-busiest day there.

Alcoa rose $7.875, to $85.125, after the world's biggest aluminum producer said its fourth-quarter earnings rose 23 percent. The company will split its stock 2 for 1 and boost its quarterly dividend 50 percent.

General Motors Corp. told analysts in a closed meeting yesterday that higher truck production could add $400 million to its 1999 profit, and its shares rose $2.50, to $80. Ford Motor Co. surged $3.4375, to $65.25.

AT&T; added $2.8125, to $85.0625, after the largest U.S. telephone company said revenue will rise by as much as 7 percent this year when acquisitions are included, more than earlier estimates of as much as 6 percent.

Eli Lilly & Co. dropped $3.50, to $78.875. Coca-Cola Co. fell $1.4375, to $68. Procter & Gamble Co. lost $1.6875, to $89.1875.

Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. rose $5.75, to $59.875, after a Merrill Lynch & Co. analyst boosted his recommendation on the company. Inc., which airs corporate conference calls and other audio and video programming on the Internet, surged $65.50, to $197.50, on optimism that the personal computer is becoming an alternative to conventional television and radio entertainment.

RealNetworks Inc., which makes software that lets companies such as air programs over the Internet, rose $9.50, to $50, after reporting that its software has 43 million registered users, up from 14.4 million a year ago.

Data Broadcasting Corp. rose $6.50, to $26.375, ahead of an initial public offering of its part-owned Internet unit.

Lycos Inc., the No. 3 online search directory, rose $20.25, to $91.75, after the chief executive of the search directory said the company will surpass Yahoo! in the number of Internet users visiting its World Wide Web site.

Pub Date: 1/09/99

Copyright © 2020, The Baltimore Sun, a Baltimore Sun Media Group publication | Place an Ad