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MARKETPLACE:  Auto | Jobs | People Search | Personals | Travel | Yellow Pages  January 20, 2005
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Stocks rise on Fed assurances...
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NEW YORK Stock prices closed higher on Wall Street.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 38 points to ten-thousand-676. Gainers on the New York Stock Exchange outnumbered losers by a five-to-three margin.

The Nasdaq Composite Index gained eleven points at 21-hundred-60.

And the Standard-and-Poor's 500 Stock Index was up five points at 12-hundred-three.

Trading volume on the New York Stock Exchange totaled one and a-half (b) billion shares. Volume on the Nasdaq Market came to two (b) billion shares.

Investors took comfort from the Federal Reserve's view of the economy, and welcomed the prospect of a merger in the software industry.

The Fed's Open Market Committee raised the nation's benchmark interest rate by a quarter percentage point to two and a-quarter percent. And in their accompanying statement, the Fed policy makers said the economy is "growing at a moderate pace" and both energy prices and the job market "continue to improve gradually."

Boosting tech stocks, The New York Times reported that Symantec is in talks to acquire Veritas Software, and that a deal could be announced later this week.

Copyright 2004 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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