NEW YORK - The stock market is closing sharply higher as Washington moves closer to avoiding a default on the U.S. government's debt.
The market had its best day since January 2.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 36 points to close at 1,692 Thursday. The Dow Jones industrial average jumped 323 points to end at 15,126. The Nasdaq composite rose 82 points to 3,760.
House Republicans said they would advance legislation to temporarily extend the government's borrowing authority so it can continue to pay its bills on time. The prospect of an unprecedented default on the U.S. government's debt and a partial shutdown of the government have been dragging the stock market lower for three weeks.