Dow hits new record high

Posted at 7:59 AM, Mar 05, 2013
and last updated 2013-03-05 09:59:28-05

By CNNMoney Staff

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) — The Dow hit a new record high within the first few minutes of trading Tuesday.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained nearly 100 points, rising as high as 14,226.20. That topped both the Dow’s intraday and closing records that were set in October 2007.

The S&P 500 added 10 points, and is within 2% of its record closing high of 1,565.15, also reached in October 2007. The Nasdaq rose 27 points, or 0.9%.

Stocks have had a strong start to 2013. Even with a largely uneventful, February, all three indexes are still up between 6% and 9% so far this year.

Investors will also be looking for any signs of progress in talks to end the budget impasse in Washington, known as sequester. The Obama administration has started making $85 billion of cuts and some federal workers have started getting furlough notices.

U.S. stocks shrugged off the budget fight to end higher Monday.

Aside from Washington’s antics, investors will keep tabs on other economic news.

The Institute for Supply Management will release its monthly index on service sector business activity at 10 a.m. ET. Economists are forecasting a slight improvement in that measure of the majority of the nation’s economic activity.

Investors are also looking ahead to central bank meetings later this week in Europe, Japan and the U.K., all of which are expected to end with more promises of support the for world’s major economies. The week ends with the U.S. jobs report which is forecast to show a pick up in hiring in February.

After the market close, gun maker Smith & Wesson Holding Co is expected to report strong quarterly results. Gun sales have surged in recent months amid speculation about new gun control laws.

JC Penney’s shares tumbled, as the struggling retailer is in the third week of a court battle with Macy’s claims that Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia violated a previous agreement with Macy’s in entering into a new partnership with J.C. Penney.

Genworth Financial Inc. shares rose on rumors that the company is planning a sale.

Investors will likely continue to watch Apple, which hit a new 52-week low on Monday. The stock is down 20% this year. Meanwhile, Google continues to hit new highs.

European markets were firmer in afternoon trading, while Asian markets ended higher after Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao announced the government will carry a larger deficit in 2013 to help the world’s No. 2 economy reach its goal of 7.5% growth this year. The Shanghai Composite added 2.3%, while the Hang Seng increased 0.1% and Japan’s Nikkei rose 0.3%.

The dollar fell against the euro, the British pound and the Japanese yen.

Oil and gold prices edged higher.

The price on the 10-year Treasury declined, pushing the yield up to 1.90% from 1.88% late Monday.

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