Stocks extend their year-end rally, led by big gains from Facebook and Apple.
Apple (AAPL) gained more than 4 percent after finalizing a deal for China Mobile to sell the iPhone in the world's largest consumer market. Picture this: China Mobile has more subscribers than the U.S. has people. After languishing for most of the year, Apple shares are now in the plus column for 2013.
Facebook (FB) jumped 5 percent as it debuted as a member of the prestigious S&P 500 club. All of the mutual funds that track the index were forced to buy -- meaning Facebook made a lot of new friends on Wall Street.
Other internet companies enjoying the day: Twitter (TWTR) and Pandora Media (P), both up more than 5 percent.
Overall, the Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) rose 73 points to 16,294, the Nasdaq composite index (^IXIC) rose 44 points to 4,148 and the Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) added 9 points to 1,828. The S&P is now up 400 points this year, its biggest-ever point gain. However, it's not the best percentage gain.
Of course, this is a holiday-shortened week here on Wall Street. Trading ends 3 hours early Tuesday and the market is closed Christmas day -- so trading volume the rest of week will be very light.
More Stocks in the News:
Shares of Target (TGT) fell 1 percent as the retailer tries to do damage control following the massive hacking attack against its customers credit info.
Homebuilders PulteGroup (PHM), KB Home (KBH) and Lennar (LEN) rallied on the likelihood that new mortgage fees set to take effect next year will be delayed.
Disk drive maker Xyratex (XRTX) jumped 27 percent and Dynamic Research (DRCO), a management consulting firm, surged 58 percent. Both companies agreed to be acquired.
In the drug sector, Ariad (ARIA) rose 8 percent as a two-month suspension of its leukemia drug was lifted.
United Therapeutics (UTHR) rallied 30 percent. Regulators approved its blood pressure treatment.
Darden Restaurants (DRI) gained 6½ percent. A second big investor is pushing to company to spin off more of its well-known chains. Darden said last week that it's looking to sell or spin off Red Lobster. Olive Garden could be next.
What to Watch Tuesday:
The Commerce Department releases durable goods for November at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time, and November new home sales at 10 am.
U.S. stock markets close at 1 p.m.; bond markets suggested to close at 2 p.m.
-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg.
8 Foolproof Ways to Grow Your Savings
After Market: Stocks Extend Rally on Big Gains from Apple, Facebook
This is my personal favorite! Think of yourself as a regular monthly bill you have to pay. All you have to do is arrange to have a set amount of money directly deposited from your paycheck into a savings account each month.
I recommend using a separate savings account because if you have access to your funds in your checking account, you're more likely to spend them. Again, it might hurt a bit at first to take home a little less every month, but trust me, after a while you won't even notice it's gone. Here's a moment when the "set it and forget it" strategy works wonders.
It feels great to be rewarded for your hard work. And it feels even better to spend that hard-earned bonus on something you’ll enjoy, like a trip to France or an iPad. At the same time, the pleasure of a vacation or new gadget is short-lived compared to financial security.
So make a pact with yourself to put every bonus you get from here on out to good use. If you direct 90 percent of your bonuses straight into your savings account as a rule, you’ll still have 10 percent to treat yourself with (plus the comfort of knowing that you're building a well-earned safety net). I live by this rule.
OK, OK, this seems like an obvious one -- and easier said than done. Actually, most people spend money on more unnecessary items than they think. So take time to look at where your money is going in detail and begin to cut back. Saving $10 here and there could help you put a lot away in the long run.
Many banks offer seasonal accounts meant to save for holidays like Christmas. These accounts give you reduced access to your accounts, charging a hefty penalty each time you withdraw more than permitted. Since emergencies don't occur often, a seasonal account could make sure you're touching it only when needed (just make sure you're not tempted to blow it all on Christmas gifts).
I love this one. Chalk it up to my massive craving for organization, but I'm all about getting rid of things I no longer use. Rather than throwing these unused goods away, start selling them, and put that money into your emergency fund. All you need to do is post them to a site like eBay or Craigslist or Amazon and you can get rid of items from the comfort of your home. You can also take your clothes to a consignment shop to have them sold for you.
Instead of saving your pennies, put aside any $5 bills that come your way. Never spend a $5 bill again, and you'll be surprised by how quickly this silly trick will help you come up with a few hundred dollars to add to an emergency fund.
You could pick up odd jobs via websites like TaskRabbit.com, DoMyStuff.com, Elance.com, FreelanceSwitch.com or Sitters.com.
If you get a cash-back reward for any spending on your credit card, just make it a rule that those dollars will be dedicated to your freedom fund. It may only add up to $100 extra each year, depending on your spending, but every little bit counts.