Investors, cheered by Merrill Lynch’s attempt to regain its financial footing, plowed ahead today despite ugly news on housing prices and consumer confidence, the Wall Street Journal reports. The rally helping the major indices recoup yesterday’s losses—and then some. The Dow was up 266.48 to 11,397.56; the Nasdaq rose 55.40 to 2,319.62; and the S&P 500 climbed 28.82 to 1,263.19.
Merrill and Bank of America led a solid day for financial stocks, often woozy of late. “What we're seeing today is some rotation out of sectors like energy that have acted very well for some time,” one analyst said after crude prices pulled back again and left traders worried about long-term shifts in US driving habits.