The Dow Jones industrial average isn’t just breaking a record today – it’s smashing it.
The blue-chip barometer has surged to its highest level ever, providing an exclamation point to the market's recovery from the depths of the 2008 global financial crisis.
Stock prices opened higher after an upbeat report about growth in the U.S. service sector eased concerns that the budget logjam in Washington would damage the economy.
As of 10:14 a.m. Pacific, the index was up 138.66 points, or 1%, to 14,266.48.
That's slightly off the day's high put still puts the blue-chip barometer on track to easily top the previous closing high of 14,164.53 on Oct. 9, 2007. It’s also well above the intraday peak of 14,198.10, which it reached two days later.
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Share prices began to slide almost immediately after hitting that 2007 benchmark as the severity of the global financial crisis became apparent. The Dow shed more than half its value over the next 17 months, bottoming out at 6,547.05 on March 9, 2009.
Given the economic tumult at the time, few on Wall Street predicted that stock prices would have recovered within four years. But the market has staged an impressive recovery from its financial-crisis low.
Aided by trillions in stimulus efforts from governments and central banks around the world, the global economy, banking system and financial markets have made enormous strides.
Still, many Americans have not benefited from the recovery. Unemployment remains stubbornly high. And many individual investors have sat out the recovery for fear of another jolt in stock prices.
Join us for a live video chat at 2:30 p.m. on the Dow. Deputy Business Editor Joe Bel Bruno and reporters Walter Hamilton and Andrew Tangel will field your questions and comments. Click back here to join in on the conversation.