Hopes of defused Syria conflict give stocks lift

Stocks rose Tuesday as investors decided a U.S.-Syria military conflict looks less likely. The same perception caused oil prices to fall.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 127.94 to close at 15,191.06. The S&P 500 index rose for the sixth day in a row. It closed up 12.28 to 1,683.99. The Nasdaq rose 22.84 to 3,729.02.

Dow makeup changes; Alcoa, BofA rotating off

NEW YORK — The Dow Jones industrial average is swapping Bank of America for Goldman Sachs and is also replacing Alcoa and Hewlett-Packard.

Bank of America is one of the Charleston area’s biggest financial institutions, and aluminum giant Alcoa operates a large smelter near Goose Creek.

S&P Dow Jones Indices says it will replace Alcoa with sporting goods giant Nike. HP is being dropped for credit card giant Visa. The changes take effect at the start of trading Sept. 23.

S&P Dow Jones Indices says a push to diversify the sector and industry group representation of the index helped prompt the changes. The Dow is made up of 30 stocks.

Apple Inc. introduces 2 new iPhone versions

Apple Inc. will offer two distinct versions of the latest iPhones — a cheaper one made of plastic and another that aims to be “the gold standard of smartphones” and reads your fingerprint.

The company that changed cellphones forever unveiled the latest iPhone models, available on Sept. 20, during an event at its headquarters. The move comes as Apple tries to fend off Samsung and other competitors in the competitive smartphone market.

Walgreen buying Kerr Drug’s 76 retail stores

Walgreen plans to buy Kerr Drug’s 76 retail drugstores and its specialty pharmacy business, a move that will help the nation’s largest drugstore chain expand its North Carolina presence.

The deal includes a distribution center but not the long-term care pharmacy business of privately held Kerr. Financial terms were not disclosed.

Raleigh-based Kerr sold its 11 Charleston-area stores to CVS several years ago.

American Express sells publishing unit to Time

NEW YORK — Time Inc. says it has agreed to buy the publishing business of American Express Co., which includes magazines such as “Food & Wine” and “Travel + Leisure.”

Financial terms were not disclosed. Time expects the deal to close in the last three months of this year. Its titles include “Sports Illustrated” and “People” as well as its namesake.

Wal-Mart smartphone trade-in option coming

Wal-Mart Stores is launching a smartphone trade-in program Sept. 21 that will help consumers trade up to the newest phones available.

The retailer said Tuesday consumers will receive a $50-to-$300 credit when they trade in a working, undamaged phone. The credit can be used toward to buy from a selection of more than 100 devices.

Consumers can receive $300 for an Apple iPhone 5, $175 for a Samsung Galaxy SIII and $52 for a Samsung Galaxy S2.

Phones can be traded in at more than 3,600 Walmart stores and Sam’s Club locations in the U.S. Consumers will need to enter a two-year contract with AT&T, Verizon Wireless or Sprint.

Staff and wire reports