World markets advance with the Dow pushing over 26000 points

James Marshall
January 19, 2018

The Dow closed above 26-thousand for the first time on Wednesday, continuing its early-year surge.

"There's a lot of enthusiasm about what tax reform will do, what repatriation will do", said Michael O'Rourke, chief market strategist at JonesTrading in Greenwich, Connecticut. SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average ETF has a fifty-two week low of $196.69 and a fifty-two week high of $257.97. The biggest gains were for pharmaceutical company Merck & Co, health insurer United Health and digger manufacturer Caterpillar.

Wall Street has been boosted by Donald Trump's tax changes, and, as highlighted by AJ Bell investment director Russ Mould, America's current president is within touching distance of being "the best" post-war president for the stock market.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average, the stock market index of 30 major companies, rose 323 points Wednesday, closing above 26,000 for the first time.

General Motors rose 2.7 percent after the company said it expected earnings in 2018 to be largely flat, compared with 2017, but that profits should pick up pace in 2019. Microsoft rose 1.7 percent and UnitedHealth gained 1 percent. The company said it expects to inject US$350 billion in the USA economy over the next five years due to the new tax law, and will create 20,000 new jobs. The stock was the biggest decliner in the S&P 500, giving up 92 cents to $12.18.

The euro retreated from a three-year high, down 0.24% to $1.2231, as investors sold the currency on doubts that the European Central Bank (ECB) would back away from its pledge to keep buying bonds at next week's meeting. The yield on the benchmark 10-yr Treasury note slipped one basis point to 2.54% while the 2-yr yield climbed one basis point to 2.01%.

U.S. crude is down 0.31% at the time of writing at US$63.77 a barrel. The exchange traded fund has 2.82 billion net assets and 1.51% volatility this month. On the Nasdaq, 1,601 issues fell and 889 advanced. The futures allow investors to make bets on the future price of bitcoin. Gold futures gained Tuesday to mark the highest finish since early September, even as a closely watched U. It fell 57 cents to $63.73 per barrel on Tuesday. Britain's FTSE 100 declined 0.4 percent.

In the United Kingdom, the FTSE 100 dropped by about 13 points to 7,755.93, as European shares dipped slightly after strong gains in recent weeks.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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