Wall St scales record highs on earnings optimism, robust data

Traders work on the floor of the New York stock exchange on 8 January 2018. Reuters

Traders work on the floor of the New York stock exchange on 8 January 2018. Reuters

Shares of Facebook tumbled Friday after it announced an overhaul of its newsfeed, while U.S. stocks added to records following data showing higher retail sales in December.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed almost one percent, adding 205.6 to a close of 25,574.73.

JPMorgan, the biggest U.S. lender by assets, said a USA tax overhaul would help future profits by reducing its tax bill and stimulating more business.

Friday's gains also followed a strong December US retail sales report, which lifted annual retail sales by 4.2 percent, the biggest increase since 2014.

Earnings from big banks were mixed, with JPMorgan Chase rising 1.7 percent after beating expectations, even as profits were hit by one-time effects of the tax law changes.

Earnings for S&P 500 companies are expected to have increased by 11.8 percent in the recently-ended quarter, with the biggest gain from the energy sector, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 228.46 points, or 0.89 per cent, to 25,803.19, the S&P 500 gained 18.68 points, or 0.67 per cent, to 2,786.24 and the Nasdaq Composite added 49.29 points, or 0.68 per cent, to 7,261.06.

Wells Fargo shed 0.7 percent as fourth-quarter earnings rose 17 percent to $6.2 billion, but were marred by $3.3 billion in litigation costs, some in the aftermath of the fake accounts scandal.

Amazon rose 1.89 percent to breach $1,300 for the first time, while Home Depot rose 1 percent and Walmart 0.6 percent. On the Nasdaq, 1,808 issues rose and 1,069 fell.