Stocks closed higher on Wall Street Tuesday, driving the S&P 500 and Dow Jones Industrial Average to their highest levels in nearly three months as optimism over the reopening of the economy overshadowed lingering worries about the pandemic. The S&P 500 rose 1.2%, for a time climbing above the 3,000-point mark for the first time since March 5, until a burst of selling in the final minutes of trading trimmed the market's gains. The Dow spent much of the day above the 25,000-point threshold for the first time since March 10, but the late pullback knocked it slightly lower, the AP reports. The S&P 500 rose 36.32 points, or 1.2%, to 2,991.77, and the Dow climbed 529.95 points, or 2.2%, to 24,995.11.
The post-Memorial Day rally followed a strong rise in global markets as more nations push to open their economies. Financial and industrial stocks accounted for much of the market's gains. Companies that rely on consumer spending also rose broadly. Airlines were big winners as traders welcomed data showing a pickup in air travel during the long holiday weekend. The gains came as the New York Stock Exchange partially reopened for the first time in two months, with plexiglass barriers, masks, and a reduced number of traders. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo rang the bell to set off trading. "They didn't reopen the way it was," he said during his daily briefing. "They reopened smarter." (Read more stock market stories.)