Wall Street rose for a fourth consecutive session on Thursday in an end-of-quarter rally that was boosted by a surprisingly strong economic report covering the U.S. Midwest.
The major stock indexes rose 1 percent, including the benchmark S&P 500, which climbed above its 50-day moving average at 1,317 despite analysts' expectations it would meet resistance.
Regional business activity grew more than expected this month, lifted by a jump in new orders, the Institute for Supply Management-Chicago said. That calmed concerns about the economy that have weighed on markets for two months.
Japan slowly coming back likely resulted in the bounce back in the Chicago PMI. (But) With all the mixed readings around the country, tomorrow's national ISM will reconcile all and will be the most important data point of the week as we shift our focus back to the economy after all the Greek drama this week, said Peter Boockvar, equity strategist at Miller Tabak + Co in New York.
The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> was up 139.60 points, or 1.14 percent, at 12,401.02. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> was up 12.60 points, or 0.96 percent, at 1,320.01. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> was up 31.47 points, or 1.15 percent, at 2,771.96.
The Greek parliament approved measures on Thursday to implement budget cuts and assets sales. Greece is now eligible for more international financial aid to avoid defaulting on debt. The parliament had backed the overall austerity plan on Wednesday, which lifted the S&P 500 more than 3 percent higher for its best three-day run in three months.
The S&P 500 is down less than 1 percent this quarter, while the Dow is up 0.5 percent and the Nasdaq is off 0.5 percent.
Much of the recent rally is due to end-of-quarter window dressing by fund managers, who typically sell losers and buy winners to make their portfolios look better.
The Federal Reserve ended its $600 billion bond-buying program, known as QE2, on Thursday and has not offered any hints of more monetary easing. Markets were volatile in May and June, partly on concerns about QE2's end.
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(Reporting by Angela Moon, Editing by Kenneth Barry)