Stocks finished higher Tuesday. The Dow added 173 points to 25635, while the S&P 500 climbed 17 points to 2755. The Nasdaq Composite gained 47 points to 7375.
The major averages inched upwards on light trading volume as investors await the results of the midterm elections. Interest rates also remained in focus during the session as the FOMC is set to begin a two-day policy meeting on Wednesday. On the data front, the Labor Department’s Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey revealed the number of job openings eased slightly in September from a record high in the prior month.
All 11 S&P 500 sectors finished higher as the Industrials and Materials groups both climbed over 1.0%. Healthcare stocks also outperformed amid a flurry of earnings releases. Shares of CVS added 5.7% to $77.90 and Mylan surged 16.1% to $36.43 after both companies topped analyst projections. Meanwhile, Eli Lilly slipped 3.8% to $105.90 after the pharmaceutical giant revealed several key drugs had disappointing sales in the third-quarter. Technology shares rebounded from yesterday’s weakness as IBM gained 2.5% to $123.12 and Apple advanced 1.1% to $203.77.
Breadth was positive on issues by 3:2 on both the NYSE and the Nasdaq. Composite NYSE Volume was more than 3.4 billion shares.
Treasuries were weaker along the curve as the yield on the 10-year note climbed two basis points 3.22%. In commodities, WTI crude slipped 1.4% to $62.19/barrel amid reports the U.S. has granted exemptions to several countries to continue importing Iranian oil. COMEX gold was off 0.4% to $1,227.80/ounce.