Dow closes above 15,000 for first time

THE Dow closed above 15,000 for the first time yesterday and the S&P 500 ended at another record high, extending the market’s rally as more investors rushed to join the party and German industrial data beat expectations.

It was the fourth straight record close for the S&P 500. Both the Dow and the S&P 500 hit intraday record highs as well.

Nine of the S&P 500’s 10 sector indexes advanced. Shares of JP Morgan Chase, up two per cent at $49.14, led the S&P 500’s climb.

Caterpillar rose 2.5 per cent to $89.79 and ranked as the Dow’s top percentage gainer.

Information technology bucked the trend, however, with Apple shares declining after three days of gains. The stock ended down 0.4 per cent at $458.66.

Investors’ sentiment was buoyed early in the day by data from Germany, Europe’s largest economy, which reported a 2.2 per cent increase in industrial orders in March, compared with expectations for a drop of 0.5 per cent.

“Markets haven’t really been anticipating much of a recovery in the euro. There’s been so little optimism,” said Sean Lynch, global investment strategist for Wells Fargo Private Bank in Omaha, Nebraska.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 87.31 points, or 0.58 per cent, to 15,056.20 at the close. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index gained 8.46 points, or 0.52 per cent, to end at 1,625.96. The Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 3.66 points, or 0.11 per cent, to close at 3,396.63.

During the session, the Dow hit an all-time intraday high at 15,056.67, while the S&P 500 touched a record intraday high at 1,626.03.

The S&P 500 is now up 14 per cent for the year.