The S&P 500 rallied at the open and continued its advance to the lunch hour and then leveled off and surfed to a closing gain of 1.22% and a new all-time high. Actually the U.S. markets (the Dow gained 0.88% and the Nasdaq 1.83%) were ho-hum performers in comparison to the eurozone, where the EURO STOXX 50 rose 2.56%, and Spain's IBEX 35 was up 3.35%.
Wednesday's gain in the S&P 500 was the third consecutive positive close after an amazing string of 13 alternating gains and losses.
Here is a 15-minute look at the week so far. (Click to enlarge)
Here is a daily chart of the index since November of last year. The rally of the past three days has shown increasing volume, but today's big gain was still at a volume level below the 50-day moving average. (Click to enlarge)
The S&P 500 is now up 11.33% for 2013 and at a new all-time high. (Click charts to enlarge)
For a better sense of how these declines figure into a larger historical context, here's a long-term view of secular bull and bear markets in the S&P Composite since 1871.