US Stocks Reach Another Milestone as S&P 500 Vaults Past 2500

Andrew Cummings
September 17, 2017

USA stocks capped the best week since January, with the S&P 500 Index climbing above 2,500 for the first time, as investors showed resilience in the face of a North Korean missile test.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 64.86 points, to 0.3%, to close at 22,268.34, logging its fourth straight record close and its sixth consecutive day of gains. The Dow climbed to a new record closing high, while the broader Nasdaq and S&P 500 spent most of the day in negative territory.

Before the start of trading, the Commerce Department released a report showing retail sales dipped by 0.2% in August after rising by a downwardly revised 0.3% in July.

Meanwhile, in the corporate space, Oracle's share price got pummelled after co-CEO Safra Catz guided toward growth in fiscal second quarter sales of between 2% to 4%, versus market forecasts calling for an increase of 4.7%.

In the background, there was some "market chatter" regarding stocks" then high valuations, what with U.S. stocks trading at a cyclically-adjusted price-to-earnings ratio of about 30 - a level only seen just before the Great Depression and again prior to the "Dot com' bubble. The Japanese yen weakened 0.62 percent versus the greenback at 110.91 per $1, and sterling last traded at $1.3567, up 1.28 percent on the day.

On the currency front, the US dollar is trading at 111.00 yen compared to the 110.24 yen it fetched at the close of NY trading on Thursday. A value of 50-75 would signify a very strong trend, and a value of 75-100 would point to an extremely strong trend.

The Nasdaq Composite.IXIC dropped 0.48 percent to 6,429.08, hurt by a 0.86-percent decline in Apple AAPL.O.

We can also take a look at the Average Directional Index or ADX of Lyxor UCITS ETF Dow Jones Industrial Average D-EUR (DJEL.L). The pound jumped to $1.3354 from $1.3197.

In small-caps, the Russell 2000 Index closed at 1,431.71 for a gain of 6.69 points or 0.47%. Subsequently, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, inched up by less than a basis point to 2.202%. It later settled at $49.95 a barrel for a gain of 0.1%.

S&P 500 measures the performance of 500 widely held common stocks of large-cap USA companies.

The US$226mln-valued company'sstock rose 3.5% on the news.

The S&P 500, up 11 percent in 2017, is trading at 17.6 times expected earnings, expensive compared with its 10-year average of 14.3, according to Thomson Reuters Datastream.

MSCI's gauge of stocks across the globe gained 0.14 percent to set a new high for an index that tracks the performance of more than 2,400 stocks in 47 countries. The euro rose to $1.1881 from $1.1873.

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