Stocks Rose on Bernanke Bond Talk

U. S. stocks rose on Wednesday after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said tapering of the central bank’s bond buying could occur in the “next few meetings.” The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately rose 73.49 points, or 0.48%, to 15,461.07. The Standard & Poor’s 500 gained 7.25 points, or 0.43%, to 1,676.41. The Nasdaq Composite added 8.34 points, or 0.24%, to 3,510.46.

Ben Bernanke said the US Federal Reserve could start slowing down the pace of its asset purchases “in the next few meetings”, but only if the labour market shows sustained improvement. Overall, Mr Bernanke struck a dovish tone in testimony to US Congress on Wednesday, asserting the merits of easy monetary policy amid debate over when the Fed might start tapering the $85bn a month rate of bond buys under the third round of quantitative easing.

Target Corp. reported a 26 percent drop in first-quarter profit as cool temperatures and financial pressures limited customers’
appetite for spending. It earned $498 million, or 77 cents per share, for the three months ended May 4. That compares with $697
million, or $1.04 per share, a year earlier. Sales rose 1 percent to $16.71 billion. Revenue at stores open at least a year
slipped 0.6 percent as the number of transactions fell 1.9 percent.

Struggling Japanese conglomerate Sony Corp. said its board of directors has started preliminary discussions on what to do about a proposal from activist hedge-fund investor Daniel Loeb to take part of the company’s entertainment business public.






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