NEW YORK - The Dow Jones industrial average closed at an all-time high Wednesday as the good narrowly outweighed the bad for the stock market.
After investors assessed a series of company earnings reports, the latest move from the Federal Reserve, and an unexpectedly weak reading on first-quarter economic growth, the stock market ended with its third straight day of gains.
Stocks started the day lower after the Commerce Department said U.S. economic growth slowed to a barely discernible 0.1 percent annual rate in the January-March quarter.
But by the end of the day, the Dow Jones industrial average had risen 45.47 points, or 0.27 percent, to 16,580.84, four points above its previous record, set Dec. 31. It was the first day the index closed higher than where it started 2014.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 5.62 points, or 0.30 percent, to 1,883.95. The Nasdaq composite rose 11.01 points, or 0.27 percent, to 4,114.56.
In company news, Pepco Holdings surged $3.97, or 17.4 percent, to $26.76 after it agreed to be acquired by nuclear power company and Peco parent Exelon for $6.83 billion.
Sealed Air was one of the companies that gained after reporting earnings. Its stock rose $1.72, or 5.3 percent, to $34.31 after the food packaging company's earnings easily beat Wall Street's expectations. The company also said it was on track to post full-year earnings at the upper end of the range of its forecast.
Stocks climbed higher in afternoon trading after the Federal Reserve's statement following its April policy meeting was in line with investor's expectations.
Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.65 percent from 2.70 percent on Tuesday. The yield on the note has fallen from 3 percent at the start of the year.
Among other stocks making big moves:
Twitter fell $3.65, or 8.6 percent, to $38.97 after its customer growth disappointed investors when it reported quarterly results late Tuesday. Twitter had 255 million monthly users at the end of March, up 25 percent from a year earlier, but 2 million fewer than industry analysts had expected. Twitter shot higher after its IPO at $26 a share in November, climbing as high as $73.31 in December. The stock has been steadily declining since then.
Express Scripts, the nation's largest pharmacy benefits manager, fell $4.43, or 6.2 percent, to $66.58 after it lowered its earnings guidance for the year, saying that it would handle a lower volume of prescriptions. Express Scripts also reported a 12 percent drop in its first-quarter earnings Tuesday.