Wall Street stocks edge to new highs

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Dow Jones Industrial Average

Last Updated at 17 Nov 2017, 20:59 GMT *Chart shows local time Dow Jones intraday chart
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S&P 500 Cash Index - Chicago Mercantile Exchange

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(Close): The Dow Jones and S&P 500 stock markets rose to fresh records on Monday, with big technology firms among the main gainers.

The Dow rose 154.64 points, or 0.87%, to 17,959.4, while the S&P 500 gained 7.89 points, or 0.38%, to 2,078.5.

The Nasdaq, which fell at the start of trading, added 16.04 points, or 0.34%, to 4,781.42.

Among the tech stocks, Intel rose 2.3%, while IBM rose 1.8%, and Cisco Systems was 1.6% ahead.

US markets have been rising since the US Federal Reserve last Wednesday kept interest rates low and left in place market expectations that it may raise interest rates only in the middle of 2015 and not sooner.

European markets also rose Monday, generating more talk about what traders have dubbed a "Santa Claus rally".

"There's still a buying mood, a feel that central banks are going to keep being supportive, and the news on the US economy keeps getting better," said Alan Skrainka, chief investment officer at Cornerstone Wealth Management.

Meanwhile, US crude oil sank 2.5% after Saudi Arabia's powerful oil minister said Opec would not cut production at any price.