Stocks Ended Higher before Christmas

U. S. stocks rose in a holiday-shortened trading day on Tuesday, helped by a report that showed American companies were investing in their businesses at the fastest pace since January. The Dow rose 62.94 points, or 0.39%, to 16,357.55, its 49th record close this year. The S&P 500 climbed 5.33 points, or 0.29%, to 1,833.32 and the Nasdaq Composite gained 6.51 points, or 0.16%, to 4,155.42.

The U.S. Commerce Department reported that orders for durable goods rose 3.5% in November, led by volatile aircraft and other transportation equipment. In another key measure, orders for core capital goods, a proxy for business investment, rose 4.5% in November, the most since January.

Sales of new single-family homes declined last month, but remained close to the fastest pace since 2008, with buyers shaking off rising mortgage rates, according to government data released Tuesday. Sales of new single-family homes fell 2.1% in November month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 464,000, down from a rate of 474,000 in October, the U.S. Commerce Department said.

Shares of Tesla Motors Inc. accelerated Tuesday after the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reaffirmed the car maker’s five-star safety rating.

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