US stocks set more records as technology and energy companies rise

US stocks have set more records in quiet post-holiday trading as technology companies again did much of the heavy lifting.

Energy companies also rose with the price of oil.

Macy's and some of its retail counterparts rose after the department store's CEO said Black Friday sales were going well while online titan Amazon made an even bigger gain.

Oil prices and energy companies rose after Bloomberg reported that a group of key oil producers plans to extend production cuts until the end of 2018.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 5.34 points, or 0.2%, to 2,602.42.

The Dow Jones industrial average added 31.81 points, or 0.1%, to 23,557.99.

The Nasdaq composite gained 21.80 points, or 0.3%, to 6,889.16. The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies climbed 2.40 points, or 0.2%, to 1,519.16.

The Dow finished slightly below its record high from Tuesday but the other major indexes closed at all-time highs. Trading ended early after the Thanksgiving holiday on Thursday.

Macy's CEO Jeffrey Gennette told CNBC holiday shopping is off to a good start with relatively few discounts and strong sales of some especially profitable products like winter clothing. Macy's gained 44 cents, or 2.1%, to 21.07 dollars and other department stores climbed as well.

Experts are mostly predicting strong sales over the holiday shopping period because of increased consumer confidence and a very low unemployment rate.

The National Retail Federation trade group expects sales to grow at least as fast as they did last year.

Amazon, along with tech giants Apple, Facebook, Microsoft and Google's parent company Alphabet, have played a huge role in the market's gains this year.

Those five companies combined are responsible for more than one-fourth of the value the S&P 500 has gained this year. Amazon and Facebook closed at all-time highs on Friday and the other three set record highs earlier this month.

AP


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