NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — U.S. stocks rallied Monday after Fed chairman Ben Bernanke’s comments on the job market gave investors reason to believe interest rates will stay low.
The Dow Jones industrial average (INDU) rose 161 points, or 1.2%, according to early tallies. American Express (AXP, Fortune 500) led gainers on the Dow after the company hiked its quarterly dividend payment 11% to 20 cents per share.
It was the biggest one-day gain for the Dow since Jan. 3, when the index rose nearly 180 points.
The S&P 500 (SPX) gained 19 points, or 1.4%, and the Nasdaq (COMP) added 55 points, or 1.8%.
In a speech to fellow economists, Bernanke said, “We cannot yet be sure that the recent pace of improvement in the labor market will be sustained.”
He added that the Fed’s “accommodative monetary policies” should help reduce high unemployment over time. THE ENTIRE RTILCE AT SOURCE