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The news conference of Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke appears on a television screen at a post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2013. The Federal Reserve has decided against reducing its stimulus for the U.S. economy, saying it will continue to buy $85 billion a month in bonds because it thinks the economy still needs the support.
NEW YORK—The stock market is closing at a record high after the Federal Reserve's surprise decision to keep its economic stimulus in place.

The Dow Jones industrial average jumped 147 points, or 1 percent, to 15,676 Wednesday. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 20 points, or 1.2 percent, to 1,725. Both were records.

The Nasdaq rose 38 points, or 1 percent, to 3,783.

Bond yields plunged, prompting investors to bid up stocks that have big dividends. Utilities surged 3 percent, the most of the 10 sectors in the S&P 500 index.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.71 percent from 2.85 percent, the biggest one-day drop in almost two years.

Gold prices surged as investors feared the Fed's continued bond purchases might cause inflation.

Volume was heavy.