US STOCKS-Dow, S&P finish at records after Yellen comments

martes 24 de febrero de 2015 17:29 GYT

* Fed to consider hikes on "meeting-by-meeting" basis - Yellen

* Home Depot helps lift Dow, S&P after earnings

* S&P/Case-Shiller edges higher in December

* Toll Brothers rises after results

* Indexes up: Dow 0.51 pct, S&P 0.28 pct, Nasdaq 0.14 pct (Adds market update, commentary)

By Sinead Carew

NEW YORK, Feb 24 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks closed higher on Tuesday, with the Dow and S&P 500 hitting records, as investors attempted to interpret a subtle change in emphasis in testimony by Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen.

Yellen told a congressional committee that the Fed is preparing to consider increases "on a meeting-by-meeting basis." While economists have been expecting a hike as soon as June, some investors saw Yellen's comments as an indicator of a later liftoff for the Fed's first rate hike since 2006.

"All the news at this point is incrementally good," said Rick Meckler, president of LibertyView Capital Management in Jersey City, New Jersey. "It's not enough to cause a significant rise at this point. The only thing that would give us a rise now would be earnings growth. In most industries, we're not really seeing strong top-line growth."   Continuación...