Stocks are continuing to show significant strength during early afternoon trading on Wednesday as investors respond well to some strong economic news as well as President Barack Obama's attempts to defend his budget proposal.

Speaking at his second televised news conference from the White House on Tuesday, President Obama said he was confident that the people would have patience and recognize that the economy is more like an ocean liner than a speedboat and takes time to change course.

Obama said his budget sought to bring about broad economic growth by moving from an era in which we borrow and spend to one of saving and investing.

President Obama's Budget director Peter Orszag spoke earlier, noting that while there are changes being made in both the House and Senate, the budget resolutions are in the same family as Obama's original proposal.

Speaking with reporters, Orszag addressed concerns that the deficit is too large and could have a crippling effect on future generations, emphasizing that the Obama administration is merely trying to lay the foundation for strong growth in the future.

The major averages have moved to the downside in recent trading, although they are currently holding onto strong gains. The Dow is currently up 131.82 at 7,791.79, the Nasdaq is up 19.93 at 1,536.45 and the S&P 500 is up 11.66 at 817.91.

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