Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Dow 19K

Yesterday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed above 19000 for the first time. But it took almost 500 trading days to get there from 18000, the seventh-longest stretch of time between such round-number marks. The 16000, 17000 and 18000 Dow records were all broken in fewer than 160 trading sessions since the previous 1,000-point level.

Simple math shows that each 1,000-point rise is less impressive than the last: The march from 17000 to 18000 was good for a 5.9 percent gain, for example, while the climb from 10000 to 11000 was a 10 percent rise. The Dow made it to 19000 by rising just 5.6 percent over nearly two years, since after it reached 18000 in December 2014.

Put the two measures together, and the latest 1,000-point climb was the result of average gains of just 0.01 percent each trading day. The last three round-number records were set after average moves of more than 0.04 percent each day.

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