Future Investments, Lower Liability, and a CEO's Comments Pushed Stocks and Markets to 52-Week Highs

After today's positive 53-point rally, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI  ) now sits at 14,023, just 128 points below its record high from 2007. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq both also closed higher today, gaining 0.73% and 0.68%, respectively. The S&P now sits at 1,530, just 35 points below its all-time high of 1,565, which it also set in 2007. While the major indexes move closer to their record levels, a few Dow stocks broke their own 52-week highs today.

Dow stocks that moved higher
Shares of General Electric (NYSE: GE  ) broke their previous 52-week high today after the company announced that it will invest at least $300 million in Indonesia. The money will be spent building partnerships with local organizations, health care, and deep-sea drilling. Indonesia is a blossoming emerging market with more than 230 million people, and General Electric sees this as an opportunity to expand its customer base. General Electric's stock now trades for $23.75, after rising 1.98% today. The company's previous 52-week high was $23.55.

Bank of America (NYSE: BAC  ) rose by 1.33% and now sits at $12.19, just a few pennies below its 52-week high of $12.42. One reason the stock probably rose was that court documents were recently released indicating that the Federal Reserve was backing the bank in a lawsuit. Insurance company AIG is looking for $7 billion in damages from B of A related to mortgage-backed securities the bank sold AIG. The biggest concerns most investors have with Bank of America are the possible future liabilities the company may face relating to the financial crisis. As the company continues to settle or be cleared of these liabilities, the stock price will continue to rise. 

Lastly, Cisco's (NASDAQ: CSCO  ) previous 52-week high was $21.34, but shares rose by 2.24% to $21.46 today surpassing the previously set mark. Cisco's trading volume was 21% higher than usual today after the company's CEO said he has stopped looking for acquisition candidates within the U.S. because of the tax bill Cisco would be forced to pay if it brought money back into the country. Currently 80% of Cisco's $46 billion in cash sits in banks outside the U.S., and if that money were brought home, the IRS would take roughly 35% of it. While Cisco could still make a bad acquisition because it has tons of cash on the balance sheet, at least shareholders now know they won't have to pay a high tax bill in addition.  

Once a high-flying tech darling, Cisco is now on the radar of value-oriented dividend lovers. Get the lowdown on the routing juggernaut in The Motley Fool's premium report. Our report also has you covered with a full year of free analyst updates to keep you informed as its story changes, so click here now to read more.


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