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Dow closes at new record as Intel, IBM gain

The Dow Jones Industrial Average bolted to a new record on Wednesday as strong Intel earnings and a new IBM venture boosted the blue-chip index.

NEW YORK: The Dow Jones Industrial Average bolted to a new record on Wednesday as strong Intel earnings and a new IBM venture boosted the blue-chip index.

The Dow jumped 77.52 points (0.45 per cent) to 17,138.20.

The broad-based S&P 500 gained 8.29 points (0.42 per cent) to 1,981.57, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index rose 9.58 points (0.22 per cent) to 4,425.97.

Intel was by far the leader of the 30-member Dow, soaring 9.3 per cent after it reported earnings that bested expectations and announced US$20 billion in additional share repurchases.

IBM rose 2.1 per cent after unveiling a "landmark" partnership with Apple in which the two giants will collaborate on applications for Apple's iOS system, which will employ IBM's supercomputing analytics. Apple fell 0.6 per cent.

Microsoft, another tech company in the Dow, gained 3.8 per cent as investors await a major reorganisation announcement from new chief executive Satya Nadella.

"Technology was really more the driver today," said Sam Stovall, chief investment strategist at S&P Capital IQ.

Stovall said the market has also been buoyed by generally solid earnings, which increase the confidence that second-quarter economic growth will live up to hopes.

Rupert Murdoch's 21st Century Fox confirmed it made a bid for rival Time Warner, but that no talks were ongoing after the offer was rejected.

A source told AFP that Murdoch "is determined to buy Time Warner" and that Fox had offered $80 billion.

Time Warner shares shot up 17.1 per cent, while 21st Century Fox sank 6.2 per cent.

Bank of America dropped 1.9 per cent as it reported a 43 per cent drop in second-quarter earnings following a US$4 billion charge for higher legal expenses.

The bank continues to face a barrage of litigation related to mortgage-linked securities that sank after the housing bust.

Yahoo tumbled 5.1 per cent as second-quarter revenues slumped due to disappointing online advertising. The results prompted chief executive Marissa Mayer to declare "we are not satisfied."

Health care company HCA Holdings soared 10.5 per cent higher after raising its 2014 earnings forecast as the company benefits from Obamacare.

Bond prices rose. The yield on the 10-year US Treasury slipped to 2.54 per cent from 2.55 per cent on Tuesday, while the 30-year dropped to 3.35 per cent from 3.37 per cent. Bond prices and yields move inversely.

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