Major stock indexes close at records as economy remains in growth mode
All main stock benchmarks finished at records on Friday as latest data indicated the economy steadily expanded even if growth fell short of expectations. Gross domestic product for the fourth quarter rose 2.6% as consumption and business activity picked up. However, economists surveyed by MarketWatch had forecast GDP growth of 3%. Robust earnings also supported stocks with health-care and tech shares leading the gains. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 219 points, or 0.8%, to 26,612 to rise 2.1% for the week. The S&P 500 added 32 points, or 1.2%, to 2,872 for a weekly gain of 2.2% while the Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 94 points, or 1.3%, to 7,505, up 2.3% for the week.