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Stocks Close Up Slightly Ahead of Yellen's Capitol Hill Debut

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- U.S. equities closed slightly higher Monday, a day before new Federal Reserve Chairwoman Janet Yellen speaks to Congress for the first time.

  • The S&P 500 gained 0.16% to 1,799.84, while the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.05% to 15,801.79. The Nasdaq added 0.54% to 4,148.17.
  • Yellen on Tuesday will deliver her first semi-annual monetary policy testimony before the House Financial Services Committee in Congress. The Fed chair will delivery the second part of her testimony before the Senate Banking Committee on Thursday.
  • "You've got a situation where the week after the labor data is released tends to be a very slow week from an economic standpoint," Phil Orlando, chief equity strategist, said in a phone interview from New York. "Investors are willing to sit on their hands and wait to hear what Dr. Yellen says in Congress for the first time."
  • There were no major U.S. economic releases scheduled for Monday.
  • In company news, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters (GMCR - Get Report) and Krispy Kreme Doughnuts (KKD) gained Monday after the companies announced a multi-year agreement to bring Krispy Kreme's signature coffee to K-Cup packs for the Keurig brewing system. Green Mountain Coffee shares jumped 2.9% to $110.92, while Krispy Kreme increased 3.2% to $17.96 a share.
  • Hasbro  (HAS - Get Report) was the top performer in the S&P 500 after the toy company said it expected toys for its boys brands to boost revenue in 2014. The upbeat company outlook offset weak fourth-quarter 2013 earnings results. Shares popped 4.5% to $52.36.
  • Loews (L) was the worst performer in the S&P 500 after the commercial holding company reported a wider fourth-quarter loss -- a loss of $198 million, or 51 cents a share -- escalated by impairment charges. Shares slumped 4.3% to $43.26.

-- Written by Joe Deaux and Andrea Tse in New York.

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