The Nasdaq Composite rose 1% on Friday on the back of a 2% advance in shares of Apple (NasdaqGS: AAPL), which is under pressure to return more of its nearly $140 billion pile of cash to shareholders.
SPDR S&P 500 ETF (NYSEArca: SPY) was on track for a sixth straight week of gains in afternoon trading Friday with many New York traders leaving their desks early as a massive snowstorm started to pound the Northeast.
The S&P 500 was set for a weekly gain of 0.3% at last check Friday but the other major U.S. stock benchmarks were mixed. The Dow was poised for a loss of 0.2% for the week while the Nasdaq added 0.5%.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq is close to a 12-year high, according to Reuters. The Fidelity Nasdaq Composite Index ETF (NasdaqGM: ONEQ), which was launched in 2003, is near its lifetime high as well.
Also Friday, the S&P 500 climbed to its highest level since 2007.
“Confidence is emerging here,” James Paulsen, chief investment strategist at Wells Capital Management, told Bloomberg. “People are finally deciding that this looks more like a sustainable recovery.”