Stocks ended the session higher amid an easing of tensions in global hot spots and dovish comments by Federal Reserve Vice Chairman Stanley Fischer.
Relative calm in Ukraine, along with a cease-fire between Israel and Palestinians in Gaza, helped calm markets. Treasuries fell as fears abated, with the yield on the 10-year note up slightly, to 2.417%. (Bond prices and yields move in opposite directions.)
Also in focus were remarks by Fischer about reduced long-term expectations for U.S. growth on the part of many observers, including the Fed.
No major economic data were released.
On the day the Dow gained 0.1%, the S&P 500 added 0.3%, and the Nasdaq tacked on 0.7%.
Stocks on the Move
Shares of Kinder Morgan (KMI) gained 9% on news of plans to consolidate its oil-and-gas pipeline business into a single company in a deal valued at $44 billion. Morningstar equity analyst Jason Stevens' note on the deal can be found here.
Intel (INTC) announced development of a new chip that is just 14 nanometers (billionths of a meter) thick and that will extend battery life. The chip, designed for use in tablets and other devices, was originally expected to debut at the end of 2013, but the company now says products that use it will hit the market this holiday season. Shares of Intel gained 1.3% on the news.
Priceline (PCLN) gained 2.2% after reporting a second-quarter profit that surpassed analysts' expectations and despite a weaker-than-expected outlook for the third quarter. Analyst Adam Fleck writes about the company's second-quarter results here.
ConAgra (CAG) announced that CEO Gary Rodkin will retire in May 2015. No successor was named. Read analyst Erin Lash's note here. The company's shares were up 1.5% for the session.
Tesla (TSLA) shares gained 4.5% after the stock was upgraded to a buy rating by Deutsche Bank.