US STOCKS-Wall St rises modestly, poised for six-day rally

viernes 20 de junio de 2014 10:38 GYT

* 'Quadruple witching' may boost volume, volatility

* Oracle slumps, Carmax surges after results

* Indexes up: Dow 0.24 pct, S&P 0.2 pct, Nasdaq 0.13 pct (Updates to open, adds comment)

By Chuck Mikolajczak

NEW YORK, June 20 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks climbed on Friday, lifting the S&P index to a third straight intraday high and its sixth day of gains, with the benchmark index also poised to notch its fourth weekly advance over the past five.

Investors may see a spike of volume and volatility towards the closing bell as Friday marks a "quadruple witching" day - the expiration of stock options, index options, index futures and single-stock futures - as traders close hedging positions or roll them over at the last minute.

The six-day run of gains in the S&P index was its longest winning streak since mid-April. For the week, the index is up 1.3 percent, while the Dow is up 1.1 percent and the Nasdaq has gained 1.2 percent.

"There continues to be this hope that the economy improves, that growth improves. But for the markets, a slow steady growth environment is pretty much nirvana," said Tim Ghriskey, chief investment officer of Solaris Group in Bedford Hills, New York.

"As long as there is modest upside, that is what generally investors are looking for that unfolds over time."   Continuación...