U.S. stocks finished mostly higher on Tuesday, with the Nasdaq Composite rising for an eighth session, as investors considered a large acquisition and partially disregarded downbeat economic reports as impacted by the weather.
Forest Laboratories jumped after Actavis agreed to acquire the Alzheimer's drug maker. Coca-Cola declined after reporting a drop in fourth-quarter profit.Shares of Tesla Motors climbed to a record after a report that Apple might be interested in buying the electric car maker.
And, the New York Fed's "Empire State" general business conditions index had factory activity in New York, the upper part of New Jersey and lower portion of Connecticut slowing in February, coming in at 4.48 in February from 12.5 in January. Economists polled by Reuters expected a reading of 9.0.
"There is little doubt that weather has affected the U.S. economic data and economic momentum has waned, but the extent of each remains a question," Bill Stone, chief investment strategist at PNC Asset Management Group, wrote in an emailed note.