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Wall Street rally lifts Dow to record high


U.S. stocks climbed higher on Tuesday, bringing the Dow Jones Industrial Average Index to fresh all-time intraday and closing highs, boosted by tech shares.

The Dow jumped above 14,700 points for the first time to hit a new all-time high at 14,716.46, buoyed by blue-chip tech giants. Microsoft shares jumped 3.57 percent, and Intel shares rose 3.22 percent while shares of Cisco Systems moved up 1.94 percent.

After the closing bell, the Dow rallied 59.98 points, or 0.41 percent, to 14,673.46 points. The S&P 500 Index edged very close to its historical intraday high before retreating in the last hour of trading. The benchmark index was up 5.54 points, or 0.35 percent, to close at 1,568.61 points. The tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index gained 15.61 points, or 0.48 percent, to 3,237.86 points.

Shares of Dow component Alcoa were flat, one day after the largest U.S. aluminum producer released its quarterly profit to formally kick off a new round of earnings reporting season.

Alcoa earned more than analysts' estimate in the first quarter in 2013, but its revenue fell short of expectations. S&P 500 first-quarter earnings are expected to have risen just 1.6 percent from a year ago, compared to 6.2 percent in the previous quarter,according to Thomson Reuters data.

Though economic data indicated the U.S. economy is growing at a slow pace, the market has still showed impressive resilience as investors intend to take a dip as a buying opportunity.

On the economic front, U.S. wholesale inventories in February dropped 0.3 percent from the prior month, while wholesale sales increased 1.7 percent, the Commerce Department reported Tuesday.

Meanwhile, the index of small business optimism of the National Federation of Independent Business declined in March. Among 10 sectors in S&P 500, materials and energy led the gains.

In corporate news, J.C. Penny shares plunged 12.22 percent to US$ 13.93 after the department chain store late Monday decided to replace its Chief Executive Officer Ron Johnson with former CEO Mike Ullman to revive the company's business.

Herbalife shares slid 3.75 percent to US$ 36.95 after the company announced Tuesday that KPMG has resigned as its independent accountant because of alleged insider trading.