Wall Street hits a fresh high as rally continues

NYSE traders Image copyright Reuters

(Close): Wall Street extended its post-US election rally, with the Dow Jones closing above 19,000 points for the first time.

The S&P 500 and Nasdaq also reached new highs for the second straight day on hopes that Donald Trump will boost the economy with tax cuts and spending.

The small-cap Russell 2000 index also set another record high close.

The Dow rose 0.35% to 19,023.87 points. The S&P 500 rose 0.22% to 2,202.9, and the Nasdaq rose 0.33% to 5,386.3.

"Optimism is returning because of the potential that exists in the form of fiscal stimulus, infrastructure spending and tax cuts and is renewing confidence on the part of investors and consumers," said Robert Pavlik, chief market strategist at Boston Private Wealth.

US budget chain Dollar Tree was one of the biggest risers on the Nasdaq, surging over 8% after the retailer reported a better-then-expected quarterly profit.

The healthcare index, which had a sharp run higher following the election, was off 1.4%, leading the fallers.