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Solid gains ... Increased spending ... Airline arrivals

March 29, 2018

NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are on track to make solid gains on the last day of trading ahead of the Easter holiday weekend. Technology stocks, which saw big declines earlier in the week, are powering much of the market’s climb. Banks, industrial companies and health care stocks also helped lift the market.

NEW YORK (AP) — The S&P 500 index rose 30 points, or 1.2 percent, to 2,635 as of 1:32 p.m. Eastern Time. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 297 points, or 1.3 percent, to 24,145. The Nasdaq added 81 points, or 1.2 percent, to 7,030.

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Commerce Department says Americans increased their spending just 0.2 percent in February, while their incomes were boosted by increased wages and business owners’ income. The modest spending increase followed an equal gain in January and a rise of 0.4 percent in December. Incomes increased a healthy 0.4 percent.

WASHINGTON (AP) — Long-term U.S. mortgage rates moved little this week after a months-long stretch of increases. Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac says the average rate on 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages ticked down to 4.44 percent from 4.45 percent last week. The benchmark rate averaged 4.14 percent a year ago.

UNDATED (AP) — A report says U.S. airlines started the year showing a slight improvement in keeping flights on time. The Transportation Department says that 79.6 percent of flights in January arrived within 14 minutes of schedule, compared with 76 percent in the same month last year. Alaska Airlines posted the best on-time rating while JetBlue Airways was last.

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