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S&P 500 closes above 1,400 for the first time since 2008

The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index closed above 1,400 for the first time in almost four years.

Nyse 2012 03 15Enlarge
The floor of the New York Stock Exchange in New York City. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index closed above 1,400 for the first time in almost four years, the Wall Street Journal reported.

The S&P 500 increased 8.32 points, or 0.6 percent, to 1,402.60, according to the Wall Street Journal. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 58.66, or 0.4 percent, to end the day at 13,252.76. That’s the seventh session in a row that the Dow has closed up. The Nasdaq Composite rose 15.64 points, or 0.5 percent, to 3,056.37, its highest close in more than ten years.

It's the first time in market history the S&P has closed above 14,000, the Nasdaq above 3,000 and the Dow above 13,000 at the same time, CNBC reported.

More from GlobalPost: Dow closes above 13,000 for first time in four years

The indexes rosy on cheery economic news. Reports showed that claims for unemployment benefits have fallen to their lowest levels in four years, CNN Money reported. And according to separate reports released today by Federal Reserve banks, manufacturing activity continues to expand.

"The economic data has dramatically improved over the last couple of months," Ryan Detrick, senior technical strategist at Schaeffer's Investment Research, told CNN Money. “The jobs numbers are gradually getting better, and that's the most important factor for the economy and stock market."

Financial and industrial stocks were the sectors that made the biggest gains in the S&P 500, according to the Wall Street Journal. Bank of America and J.P. Morgan Chase led the Dow gainers higher, CNBC reported.

Banks performed well following the results of the Federal Reserve's latest stress tests, which concluded that most of the United States’ largest banks would be able to survive another deep recession, CNN Money reported.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/120315/sp-500-closes-above-1400-first-time-2008-dow