Watch stocks you care about
The single, easiest way to keep track of all the stocks that matter...
Your own personalized stock watchlist!
It's a 100% FREE Motley Fool service...
It was a record-setting week for the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI ) , which set new highs on its way to a 2.18% gain this week. The S&P 500 (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC ) kept pace by moving 2.17% higher as well. Stronger-than-expected employment data from ADP and the Department of Labor had investors in a good mood all week, and it appears higher payroll taxes and the recent sequester haven't dampened the private sector.
Bank of America (NYSE: BAC ) led the Dow with a 6.4% jump this week. The company rallied ahead of the Federal Reserve's stress test results, which were released midweek, and then cooled off after the company passed the first round. There'll be another round of tests released this week, and the Fed will then decide whether Bank of America and other big banks will be able to increase their dividends or buy back shares. That's the big carrot for investors, so there may be room for the stock to move higher in the coming weeks.
Boeing (NYSE: BA ) jumped 5.1% as investors bet that the company will soon resume test flights of the 787 Dreamliner. The National Transportation Safety Board still hasn't determined the cause of the Dreamliner fire, but investors are looking past that to better days right now, believing that the worst is behind Boeing. Customers certainly haven't lost faith in Boeing since the 787 problems. The company disclosed $4 billion in new orders on Thursday, and if the 787 gets off the ground soon, the stock could continue to fly.
Rounding out the top three this week is Cisco Systems (NASDAQ: CSCO ) , which was up 4.8%. Tech stocks have been lagging the Dow's gains in recent months, and with a ton of cash and a low valuation, it's about time Cisco had a good week. The company didn't release any earth-shattering news, but falling unemployment and a slow-growing economy have given investors confidence that tech companies will be able to grow and may even have good uses for their cash hoards. Cisco trades at 10.4 times forward earnings estimates and pays a 2.7% dividend -- a great value in today's market.