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Dow adds to records on Boeing dividend boost

A Boeing dividend boost lifted the the Dow Jones Industrial Average. — Reuters file picA Boeing dividend boost lifted the the Dow Jones Industrial Average. — Reuters file picNEW YORK, Dec 12 — The Dow rose from record peaks early today, lifted by a Boeing dividend boost and as investors prepared for a likely Federal Reserve interest rate increase.

Aerospace giant Boeing surged 3.2 per cent after announcing it would increase its dividend by 20 per cent and undertake a new US$18 billion share repurchase program.

Analysts expect shareholders to benefit from similar moves once the tax bill moving through Congress becomes law, even as President Donald Trump has touted the corporate tax cuts as a way to boost economic growth and job creation.

“If the tax cuts are approved and signed into law, those reductions should help boost earnings and cash flow, which are the fuel for dividend payments and share repurchases,” Briefing.com analyst Patrick O’Hare said.

About 15 minutes into trading, the Dow Jones Industrial Average stood 24,492.20, up 0.4 per cent.

The broad-based S&P 500 added 0.1 per cent to 2,661.50, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index lost 0.1 per cent to 6,870.49.

The Dow and S&P 500 finished at records yesterday.

Analysts also are watching the two-day Fed meeting that kicks off Tuesday. The Fed is expected to announce an increase in the benchmark rate tomorrow, and outline the prospects for additional increases in 2018.

Toymaker Mattel slumped 3.6 per cent as it warned that annual sales could fall nine per cent. — AFP

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