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Dow tops 25,000 as investors rally behind strong hiring

By in Press Enterprise on January 4, 2018

By The Associated Press

The Dow Jones industrial average is trading above 25,000 points for the first time early Thursday, breaking another milestone. The market was rising broadly after a survey showed strong hiring by U.S. private businesses. Banks are leading the way as interest rates jump. European stocks are also rising.

KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor’s 500 index climbed 13 points, or 0.5 percent, to 2,726 as of 10:25 a.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 166 points, or 0.7 percent, to 25,088. The Nasdaq composite added 15 points, or 0.2 percent, to 7,080. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks gained 3 points, or 0.2 percent, to 1,555.

The Dow reached 24,000 on Nov. 30, just 23 trading days ago. Stocks have climbed since then as investors hoped the Republican-backed tax package would boost company profits this year. The law cuts the U.S. corporate tax rate substantially. The Dow broke through five 1,000-point milestones in 2017, on its way to a 25 percent gain for the year. The index has nearly quadrupled in value from its low during the global financial crisis and Great Recession in early 2009.

SURVEY SAYS: ADP said private U.S. businesses added 250,000 jobs last month as health care, retail and professional services companies hired more workers. The survey suggests businesses are optimistic about the economy and expect more demand. The government will release a jobs report Friday that covers both private companies and governments. Economists forecast that will show a gain of 189,000 jobs, according to a survey by data provider FactSet.

Meanwhile business activity in the 19-country eurozone reached its highest level in almost seven years. That’s based on a survey of manufacturing and services companies. One of the reasons stocks have done so well over the last year is the improved health of the global economy […]    

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