June 15 - Summary of business headlines: Stocks gain with more investors willing to bet on central bank action if Greek election unravels markets next week; Microsoft to hold event Monday; Facebook shares hit $30 on SEC letters. Conway G. Gittens reports.
PLEASE NOTE: THIS EDIT CONTAINS CONVERTED 4:3 MATERIAL Wall Street hoped for the best ahead of upcoming elections in Greece that could potentially break up the euro zone. Stock gains were broad with nearly all of the Dow 30 closing higher and the rest of the market up at least one percent. The Dow racked up a 1.7 percent gain for the week and the Nasdaq jumped half a percent. The rally at the end of the week - largely due to investors confident central banks will step in to provide extra cash if financial markets go crazy next week. Andrew Goldberg is the global market strategist at J.P. Morgan Funds. SOUNDBITE: ANDREW GOLDBERG, GLOBAL MARKET STRATEGIST, J.P. MORGAN FUNDS (ENGLISH) SAYING: "The banks have had plenty of time to prepare for this and the Federal Reserve in the U.S. is very battle hardened at this point and is doing everything it can to make sure the U.S. banking system doesn't catch that cold." With eyes on the Federal Reserve and its counterparts, investors overlooked signs of more economic weakness. U.S. factory production shrank for the second time in three months and consumer sentiment hit a six-month low in early June. Technology was in view with Microsoft expected to step-up competition with the Apple iPad with an announcement on Monday. Letters to Facebook released by the Securities and Exchange Commission show regulators asked for clarity on how growth of mobile users would impact the social network before the initial public offering. Facebook responded to questions by amending its IPO filing; that change is at the heart of lawsuits by investors who claim Morgan Stanley then revised estimates, but only informed select clients. Facebook shares jumped to their highest close in 2-1/2 weeks, but are still below that $38 IPO price. In European action - investors are gearing up for what could be tumultuous days ahead, but hope prevails for the time being, giving stocks there a lift. Conway Gittens, Reuters