Wall Street soars after smooth Biden inauguration

File: The New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) at Wall Street. AFP/Angela Weiss

NEW YORK - Wall Street hit new records and stock markets across the globe climbed after US President Joe Biden took office on Wednesday, with traders joyful over his plan to inject even more stimulus into the world's largest economy.

The Dow and S&P 500 posted all-time highs, but none gained more than the Nasdaq, which climbed 2.0 percent to a new record thanks in part to Netflix, which saw its share price surge after an excellent quarterly earnings report.

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Investors were relieved the new president took office safely after outgoing president Donald Trump's supporters attacked the US Capitol earlier this month, and are now closely watching what Congress does with Biden's $1.9-trillion economic recovery plan.

"In general, this is a market that's growing optimistic that increased fiscal spending will boost the economy and lead to earnings growth," said Art Hogan, chief market strategist at National Securities.

In Europe, Frankfurt ended with a gain of almost 0.8 percent and Paris was 0.5 percent higher, while London added 0.4 percent as the pound hit a new 2.5-year peak against the dollar.

READ: US stocks gain ahead of Biden inauguration

"European markets... (are) looking forward with optimism, with Joe Biden's inauguration marking the end of a four-year period that married up both Brexit and global trade uncertainty," commented IG analyst Joshua Mahony.

And Asia enjoyed a broadly positive session as well.

The dollar was mixed, selling off against most currencies except the euro, whose dealers are mulling political turmoil in Italy on the eve of an interest rate decision from the European Central Bank.


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