Dow Industrials Top 26000 for First Time

By FeaturesDow Jones Newswires

Dow industrials cross 26000

-- Dollar rebounds from three-year low

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-- Stocks in Europe rise

The Dow Jones Industrial Average crossed 26000 for the first time Tuesday, just seven trading sessions after closing above its last 1000-point milestone.

The blue-chip index gained 206 points, or 0.8%, to 26010 shortly after the opening bell. If the Dow industrials closes above 26000, the jump from 25000 would be the fastest 1000-point leap in its 120-year history.

Tuesday's historic rise builds on the Dow's 25% gain last year and its seemingly unstoppable climb to start 2018. The rally began in late 2016 as a bet on infrastructure spending, deregulation and tax cuts, but spent 2017 rising on the back of strong corporate earnings growth.

The start of fourth-quarter reporting season, which many money managers expect will again exceed analyst expectations, has the potential to catapult the stock market even higher, some fund managers say. They added that what they will be focusing on most, however, is what executives say they expect for 2018 results, particularly following the passage of tax overhaul.

"We have a high level of confidence in fourth-quarter earnings numbers," said Tom Wright, head of equities at JMP Securities. "But there's an even higher level of optimism around what forward guidance will be now that we have a new corporate tax structure."

UnitedHealth Group, one of the bigger contributors to the Dow's point gain, added 2.3% after the health insurer beat analyst estimates and raised its guidance.

Merck, another Dow component, gained 4.6% after the drugmaker said a combination of its Keytruda treatment with chemotherapy extended survival of patients with lung cancer.

S&P 500 climbed 0.5%, while the Nasdaq Composite added 0.7%.

Elsewhere, the Stoxx Europe 600 rose 0.4%, with the shares of industrial goods companies and insurers among the biggest gainers.

The euro was recently down 0.5% against the dollar.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng closed 1.8% higher, hitting a fresh record.

Japanese stocks rebounded from Monday's selloff, with a weaker yen helping the country's exporters. The Nikkei finished up 1% at a fresh 26-year high.

In China, the Shanghai Composite gained 0.8%, rallying from downbeat trading Monday and the Shenzhen Composite rose 0.7%.

Write to Corrie Driebusch at corrie.driebusch@wsj.com, Michael Wursthorn at Michael.Wursthorn@wsj.com and David Hodari at David.Hodari@dowjones.com

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 16, 2018 10:00 ET (15:00 GMT)

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