The Dow rose 36 points to an all-time high of 15118. The S&P 500 hit a new record, advancing 7 points to 1633. The NASDAQ was 27 points higher to close at 3436. With Friday’s gain, the major averages were higher on the week. The Dow gained 1.0%, the S&P 500 added 1.2% and the NASDAQ was up 1.7%.
The major averages ended the week on a positive note amid optimism over the U.S. economy and central bank stimulus efforts.
With no major economic data on Friday’s calendar, comments from Fed Chairman Bernanke garnered attention. In a speech at the Chicago Fed’s conference, Bernanke said the central bank is monitoring markets for increased risk taking.
Health care and consumer discretionary were the best performing sectors Friday. Shares of Humana gained 2.6% to $80.09. Retailer Gap rose 5.6% to $40.99 after saying same-store sales increased 7.0% in April. Priceline climbed 3.8% to $765.41 despite lowering its second-quarter outlook.
Energy was the worst performing group as a strong dollar weighed on energy prices. Shares of Exxon closed 1.0% lower at $90.14.
Breadth was positive on issues by 7-4 on the NYSE and 2-1 on the NASDAQ. NYSE Composite volume totaled 3.1 billion shares.
Treasuries were lower with the 10-year note falling 23/32 to yield 1.89%.