Dow Jones sails past 23000 milestone, hitting record highs

Oct 18 (Reuters) - The Dow Jones Industrial Average opened above 23,000 for the first time on Wednesday, powered by IBM, which hinted at a revival in its growth after six years in retreat. This means that instead of the index being driven primarily by the largest companies (those with the largest market capitalization) within the index, it is driven by the highest-priced stocks.

All three hit record closing highs, adding to recent records.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 29.42 points, or 0.13 percent, at 22,986.38, after briefly hitting the 23,000 mark earlier. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks fell 5.18 points, or 0.3 percent, to 1,497.50.

The S&P 500 gained 0.14 points, or 0.01 percent, to 2,557.78 and the Nasdaq Composite dropped 3.89 points, or 0.06 percent, to 6,620.11.

The major stock indexes drifted between small gains and losses for much of the day. Biogen rose $8.799, or 2.6 percent, to $344.47, while Anthem rose $3.50, or 1.9 percent, to $187.26. The company's stock rose 3.43 per cent to close at 140.79 Dollars a share on Monday.

Fifty companies are to report quarterly results this week, the first full week of the third-quarter earnings season.

Hopes of USA tax reform have received a boost lately after the House passed a $4.1 trillion budget.

Second, unlike the S&P 500, which is a market-cap-weighted index, the Dow is a price-weighted index. Brent crude, used to price global oils, rose 6 cents to close at $57.88 a barrel in London.


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