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Dow Back Over 17,000, S&P 500 Hits Record on Economic Optimism

Stocks climbed on Thursday, with the S&P 500 hitting a record high and the Dow moving back over the 17,000 milestone, as investors anticipated a moderate tone from Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen when she talks about the labor market on Friday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed unofficially 60 points higher and the S&P 500 rose 5 points to eclipse its intraday record of 1991.39. set on July 24. The Nasdaq added 5 points. On Wednesday, stocks mostly advanced after minutes from the Fed's last meeting showed some officials want a "relatively prompt" rate hike based on the economy's progress."Nothing is really trend changing; we're seeing positive economic data, as we have seen," Dave Rhoda, regional chief investment officer for Wells Fargo Private Bank, said of Thursday's economic reports, which cast better-than-expected lights on housing, jobs and factory activity. Investors were looking for a more moderate posture from Yellen when she addressed a financial gathering in Jackson Hole, Wyoming on Friday.

Closing Bell Exchange: Market perspective 3:51

IN DEPTH

- Kate Gibson, CNBC.com