Dow, S&P 500 hit record highs; dollar loses steam

Fri Nov 25, 2016 11:42am EST
 
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By Sam Forgione

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Key U.S. equity indexes swept to record intraday highs on Black Friday thanks to gains in consumer staple stocks, while European shares also advanced, and a stabilization in U.S. Treasury yields led investors to sell the dollar.

The small cap Russell 2000 also hit a record intraday high on a day when trading volumes are expected to be relatively thin, with the U.S. stock market closing at 1:00 p.m. ET.

The S&P 500 consumer staples index was last up 0.7 percent, while the consumer discretionary sector gained 0.2 percent on Black Friday, which traditionally kicks off the crucial U.S. holiday shopping season.

European shares were headed for a third week of gains, even as commodities stocks fell after a tumble in oil prices. Uncertainty over whether OPEC will agree to cut production at the group's meeting next week weighed on crude prices.

Over the past few trading sessions, the three main U.S. indexes have hit all-time highs and closed at record levels multiple times.

Those gains came as investors see U.S. President-elect Donald Trump's promises of tax cuts, higher spending on infrastructure and less regulation as beneficial to certain industries, including banking, industrials and healthcare.

"Trump's stock market honeymoon continues as the indexes push higher this morning, and the focus now shifts to holiday sales," said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at First Standard Financial in New York.

MSCI's all-country world equity index was last up 1.48 points, or 0.36 percent, at 414.61.   Continued...

 
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, U.S., November 23, 2016.  REUTERS/Brendan McDermid