U.S. stocks moved broadly higher Tuesday afternoon after shaking off a stretch of wobbly trading earlier in the day. Banks, industrial companies, retailers, restaurant chains and other consumer-focused stocks contributed most to the market's upturn. The latest gains came a day after a powerful rally gave the market its best day in more than two years.
KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 13 points, or 0.5 percent, to 2,672 as of 12:07 p.m. Eastern Time. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 216 points, or 0.9 percent, to 24,418. It jumped 669 points a day earlier. The Nasdaq added 12 points, or 0.2 percent, to 7,232. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks slid less than 1 point to 1,543.
The indexes were coming off their best day in more than two years as investors grew increasingly confident that a trade war between the U.S. and China could be averted. The market is still in the process of clawing back the huge losses it sustained last week.
ECONOMIC SNAPSHOTS: The Conference Board said its consumer confidence index slipped to 127.7 this month, down from 130 in February, which was the highest reading since November 2000. The business research group's index measures consumers' assessment of current conditions and their outlook for the next six months. Separately, the latest Standard & Poor's CoreLogic Case-Shiller national home price index shows prices jumped 6.2 percent in January from a year earlier, pushed higher by a persistent shortage of homes for sale.
PHARMA DEAL: U.S.-listed shares of British drugmaker GlaxoSmithKline rose 2.8 percent after the company agreed to buy out its Swiss partner Novartis in their consumer health joint venture for $13 billion in cash. GlaxoSmithKline gained $1.04 to $38.47.
BANNER QUARTER: Red Hat shares climbed 4 percent after the software company reported strong fourth-quarter results. The stock added $6.10 to $159.20.
GOOD CHEMISTRY: Shares in Chemours rose 2.7 percent as investors welcomed the chemicals supply company's new fiscal year earnings outlook. The stock picked up $1.29 to $48.75.
A NEW LOOK: Avon Products slid 1.8 percent on news that the cosmetics maker plans to give a board seat to an activist investor, avoiding a proxy fight. The stock dropped 5 cents to $2.79.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude slipped 20 cents to $65.35 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, used to price international oils, shed 2 cents to $69.50.
BOND YIELDS: Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury fell to 2.82 percent from 2.85 percent late Monday.
CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 105.73 yen from 105.22 yen on Monday. The euro fell to $1.2411 from $1.2455.
MARKETS OVERSEAS: In Europe, Germany's DAX rose 1.6 percent, while France's CAC 40 gained 1 percent. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares was 1.6 percent higher. In Asia, Japan's benchmark Nikkei 225 gained 2.7 percent. Australia's S&P/ASX 200 added 0.7 percent. South Korea's Kospi rose 0.6 percent. Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 0.8 percent.