Dow hits new record

Wall Street obviously isn't interested in any whining about subprime loans or high gas prices or the yucky state of the world in general. On a day when solid earnings news from Coca-Cola, J&J and JP Morgan outplayed yesterday's lukewarm results from Yahoo, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed at 12,803.84, up almost 31 points for the session and an all-time high (even though the Dow tumbled 16 points right at the end of trading). Actually, it was only a so-so day, with 11 or the 30 Dow components on the upside. But never mind - the market is still doing pretty well because the economy is doing pretty well, simple as that. Well, it's not quite that simple - there's the effect of all those mergers and acquisitons that, in some cases, have inflated stock prices to higher-than-justified levels. Naysayers keep arguing that judgment day awaits, but they said that a couple of months back when stocks took a big tumble and look what happened. Anyhow, local stocks were relatively tame on this record day, with the exception of a strong showing in the housing/mortgage sectors. Countrywide Financial was up 4.28 percent near the close, KB Home was up 2.49 percent, Indymac up 5.37 percent and Ryland up 2.07 percent. If there is indeed a "mortgage meltdown," as the LAT ominously suggested in yesterday's overwrought story on foreclosures, nobody is paying much attention.

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Mark Lacter
Mark Lacter created the LA Biz Observed blog in 2006. He posted until the day before his death on Nov. 13, 2013.
Mark Lacter, business writer and editor was 59
The multi-talented Mark Lacter
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