The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished above 25,000 for the first time on Thursday, Jan. 4, as the S&P 500 and Nasdaq posted record closes for the third consecutive day. The records came amid a renewed charge in the global stock rally that continues to test records for high prices and low volatility.
The Cboe Volatility Index (VIX) dipped below 9.0 on Thursday for the second consecutive day. The index, commonly regarded as Wall Street's "fear gauge," has never before read below 9.0 for two straight days since its inception 28 years ago.
Stocks in Europe and Asia posted sizable gains on Thursday.
The Dow was up 0.6% to 25,074. The S&P 500 rose 0.40% and the Nasdaq gained 0.18%.
Leading the Dow higher were International Business Machines Corp. (IBM) - Get Report , up 2%, and DowDuPont Inc. (DWDP) - Get Report , up 1.9%. Dow laggards on Thursday included Intel Corp. (INTC) - Get Report and Chevron Corp. (CVX) - Get Report .
Intel fell 1.7% after reports of a security flaw in the chipmaker's central processing units whose fixing causes a performance hit.
The U.S. dollar index, which benchmarks the greenback against a basket of six global currencies, fell 0.35% to 91.86 as investors pared holdings following the release Wednesday of minutes from the Federal Reserve's December policy meeting and increasing questions of the fate of the central bank's rate hike path.
Many of those questions could be addressed with the official U.S. jobs report to be released on Friday, Jan. 5.
On Thursday, private-sector hiring in December came in stronger than expected, according to data from Automatic Data Processing. Employers added 250,000 jobs, far more than economists had expected.
Tesla Inc. (TSLA) - Get Report fell 0.9% after the electric carmaker cautioned that deliveries of its flagship Model 3 will fall significantly short of estimates. TheStreet's Executive Editor Brian Sozzi points out Tesla has another issue on its horizon.
J.C. Penney Co. (JCP) - Get Report said same-store sales for the holiday months of November and December rose more than 3% during the November and December months compared with the same period last year. The stock, however, dropped slightly by less than 1%. Macy's (M) - Get Report also chimed in with better than expected holiday sales.
Marijuana stocks fell following a report from the Associated Press that said Attorney General Jeff Sessions rescinded an Obama-era policy that paved the way for legalized marijuana to flourish in states across the country, including California.
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