The S&P 500 closed at its highest in five years Friday after a report showed that hiring held up in December, giving stocks an early lift. The S&P 500 finished up 7.10 points at 1,466.47, its highest close since December 2007. The index began its descent from a record close of 1,565.15 in October 2007, as the early signs of the financial crisis began to emerge. The index bottomed out in March 2009 at 676.53. The Dow gained 3.8 percent for the week, its biggest weekly advance since June. Stocks surged after lawmakers passed a bill to avoid a blend of government spending cuts and tax increases that could have pushed the economy back into recession.