Jan 25, 2017

Dow 20k! So what?

The Dow Jones passed 20,000 on Wednesday, hitting it's first record high in more than a month.

Don't get too excited: The Dow Jones Industrial Average may be famous, but it's usefulness as an economic indicator is limited. It's a simple average of just 30 large American companies, meaning that higher-priced stocks can skew the reading.

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S&P 500 hits a record high too: The S&P 500 is a better read of overall investor sentiment, and that index has performed well of late.

Why all the excitement? Traders are banking on help from Washington, particularly in the form of corporate tax breaks. But earnings have been strong this quarter too, after more than a year of stagnant profits.

Measures of the overall price of the stock market—like stock market capitalization relative to GDP—show that stocks are pricey today. Investors beware.

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Updated 22 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 a.m. ET: 6,289,259 — Total deaths: 375,987 — Total recoveries — 2,706,820Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 7 a.m. ET: 1,811,277 — Total deaths: 105,147 — Total recoveries: 458,231 — Total tested: 17,340,682Map.
  3. Public health: Nearly 26,000 coronavirus deaths in nursing homes have been reported to federal health officials —Coronavirus looms over George Floyd protests across the country.
  4. Federal government: Trump lashes out at governors, calls for National Guard to "dominate" streets.
  5. World: Former FDA commissioner says "this is not the time" to cut ties with WHO.
  6. 🎧 Podcast: The virus didn't go away.

What it was like when police used tear gas to clear a path for Trump

President Trump walking back to the White House. Photo: Brendan Smialowski/AFP via Getty Images

Moments before President Trump began his Rose Garden address, a mass of law enforcement suddenly marched forward in Lafayette Park, across Pennsylvania Avenue from the White House.

Why it matters: It was a jarring scene as police in the nation's capital forcefully cleared young men and women gathered legally in a public park on a sunny evening, all of it on live television.

Trump goes full law-and-order

Photo: Tom Brenner/Reuters

President Trump's final decision to speak in the Rose Garden last evening as protests raged outside the gate was made only hours before, reflecting chaos on both sides of the fence.

Why it matters: Trump’s ultimate remarks fell where his instincts always were: blunt, brutal law and order, with extreme demonstrations of militarized “strength” and blustery threats.