US stocks end at record highs

New York, Jan 26 (IANS) US stocks extend gains with the Dow closing above the 20,000 milestone for the first time ever, as investors digested a batch of generally positive corporate earnings reports.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average on Wednesday rose 155.80 points, or 0.78 per cent, to 20,068.51, Xinhua news agency reported.

The S&P 500 added 18.30 points, or 0.80 per cent, to 2,298.37. The Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 55.38 points, or 0.99 per cent, to 5,656.34.

Before Wednesday’s opening bell, the Boeing Company announced fourth-quarter revenue of $23.3 billion, with GAAP earnings per share of $2.59 and core earnings per share (non-GAAP) of $2.47 dollars, reflecting overall solid execution on production programs and services.

Shares of the aircraft maker surged 4.24 per cent to $167.36 apiece on Wednesday following the release of the company’s strong quarterly results.

United Technologies, another Dow component, also posted quarterly profit and revenue on Wednesday that roughly in line with Wall Street expectations. Its shares fell 0.58 per cent to $110.96 apiece.

The latest data from Thomson Reuters showed that the S&P 500 companies’ blended earnings in the fourth quarter of 2016 are expected to rise 6.8 per cent year on year, while the revenues are forecast to increase 4.1 per cent.

Some analysts believed that US President Donald Trump’s new executive orders also boosted bullish sentiment on the Wall Street.

US stocks posted solid gains after Trump won the presidency election as investors bet that he would pursue massive corporate tax cuts, deregulation, and infrastructure spending.

Dow closed above 19,000 for the first time ever on November 22 and has increased about 9 per cent since the November 8 Election Day.

–IANS

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