Dow Hits Another Record as Banks and Oil Continue to Climb

(AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)
(AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

U.S. stocks are resuming their climb Monday, led by gains in energy companies and banks, sending the Dow Jones industrial average to another record high. Technology companies, which have weakened since the presidential election, recovered some of their recent losses. European stocks were mostly higher, but Italy’s market slipped after Italian voters rejected constitutional changes and the country’s premier said he would resign.

KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 49 points, or 0.3 percent, to 19,219 as of 1:30 p.m. Earlier it rose as high as 19,274. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index jumped 13 points, or 0.6 percent, to 2,204. The Nasdaq composite climbed 50 points, or 1 percent, to 5,305. Small-company stocks once again outpaced the rest of the market.

RUSSELL RISING: Small-company stocks rose more than the rest of the market. The Russell 2000 jumped 19 points, or 1.5 percent, to 1,333. Thanks to a big rally in November, the Russell is up 17 percent this year, more than twice as much as the S&P 500. Smaller companies, which are more domestically focused than large multinationals, could stand to benefit more than larger companies from a pickup in U.S. growth.

ENERGY: Oil prices rose for the fourth day in a row and reached their highest level since July 2015. Benchmark U.S. oil rose 22 cents to $51.90 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, used to price international oils, gained 49 cents to $54.95 a barrel in London.

The rising price of oil sent energy companies higher. ConocoPhillips picked up $1.30, or 2.7 percent, to $49.42 and Hess rose $1.91, or 3.3 percent, to $59.83. Chevron, which has surged 27 percent this year, rose $1.39, or 1.2 percent, to $114.39.

The price of oil has surged since OPEC countries finalized a deal that will trim oil production starting in January.

BIG GAINS FOR BANKS: Banks resumed their post-election rally and are trading at their highest levels since early 2008. Goldman Sachs gained $4.65, or 2.1 percent, to $228.02, a nine-year high. Citigroup picked up $1.26, or 2.3 percent, to $57.29. While stocks traded lower overall last week, banks are on a four-week winning streak since the election.

TECH RALLY: Microsoft added 88 cents, or 1.5 percent, to $60.13 and chipmaker Nvidia rose $3.34, or 3.8 percent, to $91.79. Customer-management software developer climbed $2.78, or 4.1 percent, to $71.19. Tech stocks are down about 1 percent since the election as investors have wondered about the effects of President-elect Donald Trump’s potential trade policies. The stocks had also reached all-time highs earlier this year.

OTHER GAINERS: Consumer stocks and materials companies also outperformed the rest of the market. Travel website operator TripAdvisor added $1.38, or 3 percent, to $47.84 and Amazon jumped $19.29, or 2.6 percent, to $759.64. Dow Chemical rose 50 cents to $55.92 and steelmaker Nucor added $1.58, or 2.5 percent, to $64.61.

HEALTH WOES: Health care stocks took the biggest losses. Health insurer UnitedHealth, which has soared since the election, shed $4.05, or 2.5 percent, to $156.68 and drugmaker Merck fell $1.05, or 1.7 percent, to $60.08.

BONDS: Investors bought bonds, sending prices higher. Yields fell after spiking earlier in the day. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note declined to 2.37 percent from 2.39 percent late Friday.

ITALY SAYS NO: Italian voters rejected proposed constitutional changes to the national constitution on Sunday, causing political and economic uncertainty for Europe’s fourth-largest economy. Premier Matteo Renzi said he would resign. Italy’s FTSE MIB index slipped 0.2 percent. UniCredit, the biggest bank in Italy, lost 3 percent in Milan. Monte dei Paschi di Siena, the country’s third-biggest lender, slumped 4 percent. The bank failed a stress test this year and has been in negotiations with investors to raise money to shore up its financial position.

DAKOTA DISPUTE: On Sunday the Army Corps of Engineers denied a permit for the Dakota Access oil pipeline in North Dakota. The Standing Rock Sioux tribe and its supporters argue that the proposed route for the pipeline threatens the tribe’s water source and cultural sites. It’s the last major piece of construction on the 1,200-mile, $3.8 billion pipeline. The companies involved in the pipeline criticized the decision and it’s not clear if the Trump administration will try to overturn the decision after Trump takes power in January.

The companies connected to the pipeline traded lower Monday. Energy Transfer Equity gave up 28 cents, or 1.7 percent, to $16.20. Energy Transfer Partners lost 67 cents, or 1.9 percent, to $33.71 and Sunoco Logistics shed 41 cents, or 1.8 percent, to $22.77. Those two companies recently agreed to combine.

FAIR OFFER FOR FAIRPOINT: Telecommunications company Fairpoint agreed to be bought by Consolidated Communications in a deal the companies valued at $1.5 billion in stock. Fairpoint gained $2.07, or 12.2 percent, to $19.08 and Consolidated stock slid $1.16, or 4.1 percent, to $27.22.

CURRENCY: The dollar rose to 113.45 yen from 113.67 yen. The euro rose to $1.0784 from $1.0660.

OVERSEAS: Outside of Italy, European stock indexes were sharply higher. Germany’s DAX added 1.6 percent and France’s CAC-40 gained 1 percent. In London the FTSE 100 advanced 0.2 percent. Asian stocks mostly fell. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 retreated 0.8 percent. The South Korean Kospi gave up 0.4 percent and the Hang Seng in Hong Kong lost 0.3 percent.

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