NEW YORK - The stock market notched another record close Monday after a big acquisition in the food industry. Hope for a longer-term budget deal in Washington helped.
Food distributor Sysco rose the most in the Standard & Poor's 500 index after the company announced an agreement to buy rival US Foods in an $8.2 billion deal. Sysco's stock jumped $3.31, or 9.7 percent, to $37.62.
The S&P 500 climbed 3.28 points, or 0.18 percent, to 1,808.37, a point above its previous record close of 1,807.23 on Nov. 27.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 5.33 points, 0.03 percent, to 16,025.53. The Nasdaq composite increased 6.23 points, or 0.15 percent, to 4,068.75.
The market extended a rally from Friday that was driven by a report of solid U.S. job gains.
"We're just continuing the bullishness that we've had," said Rex Macey, chief investment officer of Wilmington Trust Investment Advisors, a unit of Wilmington Trust Bank.
Stocks also were supported by reports that U.S. lawmakers were moving closer to reaching a longer-term budget deal, said Bill Stone, chief investment strategist at PNC Wealth Management Group. Dick Durbin, the No. 2 Democrat in the Senate, said Sunday on ABC that budget negotiations were making progress and moving in the right direction.
The stock market has climbed to record levels this year as corporations have kept increasing their earnings and the Fed Reserve has kept up its $85 billion-a-month bond-purchasing program. The Fed's purchases have pushed up bond prices, lowered interest rates, and encouraged investors to buy stocks.
Fed policymakers will meet next week, though few analysts are predicting they will make changes to the program.
Improvements in the labor market since September 2012, when the Fed started its most recent round of stimulus, provided the most powerful argument for reducing bond purchases, St. Louis Fed president James Bullard said Monday.
Among stocks making big moves, Twitter climbed $4.19, or 9.3 percent, to $49.14, its highest close since going public last month. The company said last week that it was developing targeted ads based on users' web-browsing histories.
Edwards Lifesciences slipped $3.56, or 5.4 percent, to $62.73 after the Wall Street Journal reported the company forecast lower sales of its Sapien heart valves.