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2014 has hardly been a banner year for stocks so far but the S&P500 (^GSPC) overcame a terrible January to post new record highs last week. After closing at 1,741 on February 3rd the S&P roared back for the balance of the month and despite some Russia-related upsets it closed Tuesday at 1,873, its 2014 high.
The moves support Tesla's aggressive plan to boost overseas sales in 2014. By the end of the year, Tesla said it expects combined sales of the Model S sedan in Europe and Asia will be nearly twice the number of sales in North America. Last year, Tesla sold 22,477 cars, most of them in the United States. Tesla also aims to launch the car later this year in China.
U.S. private employers added 139,000 jobs in February, shy of economists' expectations, and gains in the previous month were revised lower, a report by a payrolls processor showed on Wednesday. Economists surveyed by Reuters had forecast the ADP National Employment Report would show a gain of 160,000 jobs. "As you head to Friday's payroll report, you are looking at another month of weather effect," said Scott Brown, chief economist at Raymond James in St. Petersburg, Florida.