NEW YORK -- U.S. stocks rose to records, brushing off a slump in tobacco issues, as the highest oil prices since the Persian Gulf war fueled a rally in Exxon Corp. and other producers.
After crashing through 6,000 Monday, the Dow Jones industrial average began its assault on the next century mark, climbing 35.03 to a record 6,094.23 yesterday. The march to all-time highs has left some investors behind, and now they're throwing more money into stocks to avoid being caught short, analysts said.
The Dow industrials gained 124.85 points, or 2.1 percent, this week, setting four records along the way. Yesterday's rally would have been more impressive had Philip Morris Cos. not tumbled $5.375 to $92 and shaved 15 points from the 30-stock average after a scientific journal published a study claiming a direct link between smoking and lung cancer.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index also set a record, its fourth this week, climbing 3.83 to 710.82. The Nasdaq composite index snapped a two-day losing streak that began after it reached a record 1,258.10 Tuesday, rising 0.52 to 1242.48.
The drop in tobacco issues was offset by rising oil shares. November crude oil gained 37 cents to $25.79 a barrel, the highest since Jan. 16, 1991 -- the day fighting broke out in the gulf war. Spurring the latest gains was speculation that internal strife within Iraq would heighten regional tensions.
The S&P; oil index climbed 9.24 to 607.09. Royal Dutch Petroleum Co. climbed $3.375 to $168.625; Exxon Corp. rose $1.25 to $89.375, Amoco Corp. jumped 62.5 cents to $74.875; Mobil Corp. rose $2.125 to $120.875; and Texaco Inc. surged $1.375 to $103.375.
Among broad U.S. stock indexes, the Russell 2,000 index of small capitalization stocks fell 0.35 to 347.85; the Wilshire 5,000 index, comprising stocks on the New York, American and Nasdaq stock exchanges, climbed 24.27 to a record 6,943.80; the American Stock Exchange market value index climbed 1.64 to 579.03; and the S&P; 400 midcap index rose 0.49 to a record 245.89.
About 1,340 stocks advanced and 1,053 issues declined on the New York Stock Exchange, where some 473 million shares traded.
RJR Nabisco Holdings Corp. fell $1 to $26.50 and B.A.T. Industries PLC's American depositary receipts fell 68.75 cents to $13.4375. Loews Corp. dropped $1.625 to $80 and UST Inc. dropped 50 cents to $29.25.
The yield on the benchmark 30-year Treasury bond dropped .01 to 6.79, down 0.05 percentage point this week.
Disappointing earnings from Xerox Corp. hurt the broad stock market. The copier company's shares tumbled $8.25 to $48.75 after it said third-quarter profit dropped 2 percent.
To date, 232 companies in the S&P; 500 have reported results for the quarter ended Sept. 30. Of them, 120, or 51.7 percent, beat expectations; another 39, or 16.8 percent, were in line with estimates; and, 73, or 31.5 percent, fell short.
International Business Machines Corp. rose $3.75 to $129.375. The company is expected to report higher third-quarter earnings.
Pub Date: 10/19/96