U.S. stock market clinches superfecta of record highs Thursday as bulls pin buying to fiscal spending bill

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Major U.S. stock benchmarks finished at record highs on Thursday as lawmakers neared a deal to extend a new financial lifeline to businesses and individuals amid the pandemic. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 0.5% at around 30,303, the S&P 500 index finished the session up 0.6% at 3,722, while the Nasdaq Composite Index ended the session with a 0.8% gain at 12,765. All three of those equity gauges notched a record closing peak, while the small-capitalization Russell 2000 index also finished at a record high. Top lawmakers in Washington were hashing over a roughly $900 billion coronavirus relief deal that includes another round of direct payments to households, possibly ending months of gridlock as the deadly virus enters a new phase in the U.S. and elsewhere in the world.
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