Just when you thought the world was ending, things are looking up on Wall Street. Traders pushed stocks higher Tuesday, buoyed by optimism about a deal to resolve the "fiscal cliff" and an upgrade to Greece's credit rating, putting the S&P on track for its strongest two-day run in weeks.
At 11:45 a.m. PST, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 0.69%, to 13,326.58, while the Nasdaq composite inched up 1.17% to 3,045.77. The S&P 500 rose 0.86% to 1,442.75, the highest it has been in a month.
"The market is perceiving progress on the fiscal-cliff front," said Todd Salamone, senior vice president of research at Schaeffer's Investment. "Even though Plan B from [House Speaker John A.] Boehner is vague, the fact that they’re seeing counter offers is perceived as a step in the right direction."
Also Tuesday, Standard & Poor's said that the "strong determination" of European governments to keep Greece in the Eurozone allowed it to move the country's credit rating from selective default to B-. That allowed investors to feel some optimism on another concern that's kept the market muted this year -- instability in Europe’s financial system.