By: JeeYeon Park CNBC.com Writer
Stocks finished higher for the fourth-consecutive session Wednesday, with the S&P 500 within striking distance of the 1,500 level and the Dow Jones closing at its best level in five years, lifted by a batch of stronger-than-expected earnings.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 67.12 points, or 0.49 percent, to close at 13,779.33, led by IBM and Disney.
The Dow is up more than 5 percent so far this month, on pace for the best January performance since 1997 when the index rose 5.7 percent. The index is also within 3 percent of its all-time closing high of 14,164.53 hit on October 9, 2007.
The S&P 500 eked out a gain of 2.25 points, or 0.15 percent, to finish at 1,494.81. The Nasdaq rose 10.49 points, or 0.33 percent, to end at 3,153.67.
The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX), widely considered the best gauge of fear in the market, finished above 12.