Here Are 3 Hot Things to Know About Stocks Right Now

  • The Dow Jones Industrial Average, the S&P 500, and the Nasdaq on Wednesday finished at record closing highs on strong economic data and word from President Donald Trump that negotiators were close to reaching an initial trade agreement between the U.S. and China.
  • Deere  (DE) - Get Report was sliding after the farm-equipment manufacturer posted modestly stronger-than-expected fourth-quarter earnings but cautioned that construction and agricultural equipment sales in the coming financial year are likely to decline sharply. Deere is Real Money's Stock of the Day.
  • Dell (DELL) - Get Report was falling after the world's third-largest personal computer maker said a shortage of chips from its main supplier, Intel (INTC) - Get Report , would hit sales for the final months of the year.

Wall Street Overview

The three major indexes closed at record highs yet again Wednesday, driven by positive economic data and word from President Donald Trump that negotiators were close to reaching an initial trade agreement between the U.S. and China.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 42 points, or 0.15%, to 28,164, while the S&P 500 was up 0.42% to 3,153.65, and the Nasdaq advanced 0.66% to 8,705.17. The indexes also hit record intraday highs.

McDonald's

(MCD) - Get Report

, Apple

(AAPL) - Get Report

 and Pfizer

(PFE) - Get Report

were the Dow's biggest gainers.

Autodesk (ADSK) - Get Report was the Nasdaq's biggest gainer, after the design-and engineering-software company's fiscal third-quarter results prompted a number of securities analysts to bump up their price targets.

Trump told reporters outside the White House Tuesday that the U.S. was in the "final throes of a very important deal" with China, while officials in his administration briefed the media on the possibility of a phase one agreement before the end of the year.

"It's going very well but at the same time we want to see it go well in Hong Kong," Trump said following passage by U.S. lawmakers of a bill supporting human rights in the China-backed territory. "I think that (Chinese) President Xi can make that happen. I know him and I know he'd like to make it happen."

China's impetus for a near-term agreement was made even more apparent Wednesday with data showing the world's second-largest economy continues to struggle with slowing domestic demand and tariff-led pressures on exports. China's industrial profits fell 9.9% in October, the third consecutive month of declines and the steepest drop in eight months.

Deere  (DE) - Get Report was off 4.3% to $169.06 after the farm-equipment manufacturer posted modestly stronger-than-expected fourth quarter earnings Wednesday but cautioned that construction and agricultural equipment sales in the coming financial year are likely to decline sharply. Deere is Real Money's Stock of the Day.

Dell (DELL) - Get Report slipped 5.3% to $50.39 after the world's third-largest personal computer maker said a shortage of chips from its main supplier, Intel (INTC) - Get Report , would hit sales for the final months of the year.

Under Armour (UAA) - Get Report , one of the top gainers in the S&P 500, advanced 6.2% to $19.10 after analysts at Raymond James boosted their rating on the stock amid the overhang of a federal probe into its accounting practices.

HP Inc. (HPQ) - Get Report fell 1.4% to $19.79 after the printer and PC maker posted modestly stronger-than-expected fourth quarter earnings and continued to resist a $33 billion takeover approach from its smaller rival Xerox (XRX) - Get Report .

In economic news, the Federal Reserve's Beige Book indicated that the U.S. economy "expanded modestly" from October through mid-November.

Orders for durable goods rose 0.6% in October after dropping in September, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. Orders for military aircraft increased 18.1%. Excluding defense, durable goods orders edged up 0.1%.

The Commerce Department said gross domestic product increased at a 2.1% annualized rate -- the department's second estimate of third-quarter GDP -- up from the 1.9% pace estimated last month.

"There's a lot to be thankful for in today's GDP revision -- namely the strength of the consumer," said Mike Loewengart, vice president of investment strategy at E-Trade. "If our economy is one thing, it's resilient --especially given where we stand in the business cycle, ongoing geopolitical tensions, and trade disputes looming over global growth prospects.

"Durable-goods orders flipped into positive territory, which is a really encouraging sign for the manufacturing sector, and jobless claims is the lowest we've seen in three weeks. All in all, there are a flurry of positive signals heading into the holiday, and amid a backdrop of record market highs, we could see some fuel behind a Santa Claus rally."

CMC Markets analyst David Madden said "the Fed cut rates three times since June, and it is fair to say we have yet to see the full impact of the cuts, so the final quarter might be in for a lift."

"Jobless claims dipped to 213,000 from 227,000," he said. "Personal income was 0.0% last month, while personal consumption increased by 0.3% meeting forecasts. The updates paint a positive picture of the U.S. economy. "

Apple and Pfizer are holdings in Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS member club. Want to be alerted before Jim Cramer buys or sells these stocks?