RECORD CLOSE: The Standard & Poor's 500 index eked out another record close after stocks built on a solid gain from Friday, when the government reported strong hiring in November. Stocks have been marching higher this year on a combination of rising corporate earnings and Federal Reserve stimulus.
FOOD FOR THOUGHT: Sysco's stock jumped after the food distributor said it had agreed to buy closely-held rival US Foods in an $8.2 billion acquisition.
BUDGET BOOST: Stocks also got a lift from reports that lawmakers are moving closer to reaching a budget deal. The stock market's record-setting run stuttered in October, when lawmakers failed to reach an agreement over the budget, causing a 16-day partial government shutdown.