- The Washington Times - Friday, August 28, 2009

NEW YORK (AP) | The stock market’s rally plodded along Thursday, sustained by gains in financial and industrial shares.

Major indexes overcame early losses and finished slightly higher, including the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which added 37 points to set a fresh 2009 high. The Dow has risen for eight straight days, its longest winning streak since April 2007.

After giving up as much as 84 points early on, the Dow rose 37.11, or 0.4 percent, to close at 9,580.63. The Dow’s eight-day advance totals 445 points, or 4.9 percent.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index rose 2.86, or 0.3 percent, to 1,030.98, while the Nasdaq Composite Index rose 3.30, or 0.2 percent, to 2,027.73.

The S&P; 500 and the Nasdaq have finished higher seven out of the past eight days, rising about 5 percent over that period.

Big gains in a handful of financial stocks helped to turn the market around. Shares of American International Group Inc. surged nearly 27 percent, rising $10.15 to $47.84, as analysts speculated the company might be reconciling with former CEO Maurice “Hank” Greenberg, who could help bring private capital to the company. AIG shares have more than doubled in eight days.

CIT Group Inc. jumped 22.8 percent, adding 29 cents to $1.56. Citigroup Inc. rose 42 cents, or 9.1 percent, to $5.05.

Shares of Boeing Co. rose, giving a boost to the Dow, after the company said its long-delayed 787 aircraft will be ready for its first flight by the end of this year. Shares jumped $4, or 8.4 percent, to $51.82.

Energy stocks, which had weighed on the market early in the day, pulled off of their lows as oil prices turned higher.

Like stocks, oil prices have been extremely volatile in recent weeks as investors try to determine whether current prices are warranted given still weak demand.

Crude for October delivery added $1.06 to settle at $72.49 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Bond prices were mostly lower even after a strong auction of seven-year notes. The yield on the 10-year note rose to 3.46 percent from 3.44 percent.

The dollar was mixed, while gold prices inched higher.

In other trading, the Russell 2000 Index of smaller companies slipped 0.25, or 0.04 percent, to 583.77.

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