NEW YORK, June 9 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks trimmed earlier gains but still closed in green territory Monday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average edging closer to the round number of 17,000 points, as a general rise in stocks around the world buoyed the U. S. market.
Following an across-the-broad advance in global market Monday, Wall Street kept its recent upward trend which had helped major indices rewrite record book repeatedly in the past few weeks.
The blue-chip Dow hit a fresh record intraday high of 16,970.17 points, within a striking distance of the psychologically important level of 17,000 points, before finishing at a historical closing high of 16,943.10 points, up 18.82 points, or 0.11 percent.
The broader S&P 500 also touched an all-time high of 1,955.55 points in intraday trading and marked a record close of 1,951.27 points, up 1.83 points, or 0.09 percent. The Nasdaq Composite Index added 14.84 points, or 0.34 percent, to 4,336.24.
The record rally came out largely due to bullish sentiment from investors who are increasingly believing that the world's biggest economy is regaining momentum after dipping into a contraction in the first quarter of 2014 related to an abnormal cold weather.
On Friday, both the Dow and the S&P 500 set all-time highs, as U.S. May jobs report above market expectations provided further evidence that the U.S. labor market remains on its recovering path, which ignited investors' risky appetite for stocks.
In absence of major economic data in the United States, investors cheered economic data outside the country which turned out better-than-expected.
China's exports jumped 7 percent year on year in May in dollar terms following a 0.9-percent increase in April and sharp declines in March and February, while imports fell 1.6 percent in May, China's customs data showed on Sunday.
Moreover, the Japanese economy expanded at an annualized rate of 6.7 percent during the first quarter of this year in inflation- adjusted terms, up from an initial reading of 5.9 percent released in May, the Japanese government said Monday.
Jubilant merger and acquisition activity also contributed to boost the stocks' upward steam.
Idenix Pharmaceuticals Inc. saw its shares skyrocket 229.05 percent to 23.79 U.S. dollars apiece after U.S. drug maker Merck & Co. Inc. said it will acquire Idenix for 24.50 dollars per share in cash, which values the purchase at approximately 3.85 billion dollars.
Shares of the Hillshire Brands Company surged 5.33 percent to 62.06 dollars apiece after Tyson Foods, an U.S. multinational corporation, is reportedly set to win a battle to take over the American food company based in Chicago.
The CBOE Volatility Index, a gauge of fear in the market, ticked up 3.91 percent to end at 11.15.
In other markets, oil prices gained Monday on the upbeat Chinese trade figures. Light, sweet crude for July delivery moved up 1.75 dollars to settle at 104.41 U.S. dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude for July delivery gained 1.38 dollars to close at 109.99 dollars a barrel.
Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange went up slightly Monday as investors waited for economic data to come out later this week. The most active gold contract for August delivery rose 1.4 dollars, or 0.11 percent, to settle at 1,253.9 dollars per ounce.
The U.S. dollar advanced against most major currencies Monday, continuously benefited from the upbeat U.S. non-farm payroll report released last week.
In late New York trading, the euro fell to 1.3588 dollars from 1.3645 dollars in the previous session. The dollar bought 102.55 Japanese yen, higher than 102.53 yen of the previous session.