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Dow closes up slightly as other stock indexes slip

Specialist Mario Picone adjusts his Dow 20,000 cap

Specialist Mario Picone adjusts his Dow 20,000 cap as he works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2017. The Dow Jones hit 20,000 points for the first time, the latest milestone in a record-setting drive for the stock market. Photo Credit: AP / Richard Drew

U.S. stock indexes ended the day mostly lower Thursday, except for the Dow Jones industrial average, which climbed slightly a day after closing above 20,000 for the first time. Health care and consumer products companies fell the most Thursday.

ON WALL STREET: At the close, the Dow, which tracks 30 big industrial companies, was up 32.4 points, about 0.2 percent, at 20,100.9. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index slipped 1.7 points, about 0.07 percent, to 2,296.7. The Nasdaq composite gave up 1.2 points, about 0.02 percent, to close at 5,655.2.

OIL PRICES: As markets closed, the benchmark U.S. crude oil was up $1.02 at $53.77 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. In London on the Intercontinental Exchange Europe, Brent crude, used to price international oils, gained $1.09 to $56.17 a barrel. Southwestern Energy closed up 18 cents at $9.79, and Chesapeake Energy slipped 1 cent to close at $7.12. Exxon Mobil Corp. closed up 26 cents at $85.60.

DOW RECORD: The main driver in markets remained Wednesday’s milestone for the Dow. The hope, certainly among the ranks of the investing community on Wall Street is that the new Trump administration will be good for business, through a variety of policy changes on trade, tax and regulation. At the close Goldman Sachs Group was up $2.33 at $239.58.

ANALYST TAKE: “Donald Trump joined in on the celebrations of yesterday’s 20,000 marker and to a large degree he is to thank for it coming to fruition,” analyst Joshua Mahony, market analyst at IG, said Thursday. “Despite the divisive nature of Trumps policies, markets have come to the realization that money talks, and with many of his other policies coming to fruition, it seems a fiscal spending package is just around the corner.”

LUNAR NEW YEAR: Markets in China, Hong Kong, South Korea and other Asian countries are about to begin holidays of varying lengths to mark the lunar new year, curtailing trading across much of the region.

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