Dow Trades Near All-time Closing High

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rallied 280 points, or 1.5%, to 18,612 on Wednesday, to trade within a hair's breadth of its all-time record of 18,636.05 set in August. The rally was led by sharp gains in Pfizer Inc., Merck & Co, Inc and Caterpillar Inc, and banking stocks like Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. as investors bet that Donald Trump's presidency would usher in massive fiscal spending over the next few years. Higher inflation would be beneficial to banks. Meanwhile, pharmaceutical companies surged as the defeat of Hillary Clinton was seen as removing obstacles to aggressive price-hikes in the drug sector.

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