S&P 500 ends at record high for 2nd straight session

Reuters
A street sign for Wall Street hangs in front of the New York Stock Exchange
A street sign for Wall Street hangs in front of the New York Stock Exchange May 8, 2013. REUTERS/Lucas Jackson/Files

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The S&P 500 closed at a record high for a second straight session on Tuesday, buoyed by the latest round of merger activity and as expectations for rate cuts at the European Central Bank stoked investors' appetite for equities.

Based on the latest available data, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 69.23 points or 0.42 percent, to finish unofficially at 16,675.50. The S&P 500 gained 11.38 points or 0.60 percent, to end unofficially at 1,911.91. The Nasdaq Composite added 51.26 points or 1.22 percent, to close unofficially at 4,237.07.

The benchmark S&P 500 index also finished Friday's session at a record high. The U.S. stock market was closed on Monday for the Memorial Day holiday.

(Reporting by Caroline Valetkevitch; Editing by Jan Paschal)