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Tuesday, 1 May, 2001, 21:23 GMT 22:23 UK
Dow closes at ten-week high
traders on wall street
Traders celebrating the Dow's biggest rise for ten weeks
US stocks rose on Tuesday, with the blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average ending the day up more than 163 points at 10,898.34, its highest close for more than two months.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq also closed up more than 52 points, or 2.46%, to end at 2,168.29.

A favourable earnings report from the US consumer products giant Procter & Gamble (P&G) was the main spur behind the rise.

Shares in P&G alone rose $4.13, or nearly 7%, to $64.18, the jump accounting for almost 17% of the Dow's increase as a whole.

Analysts were speculating that the market's advance reflected growing sentiment that the US central bank, the Federal Reserve, will cut rates for a fifth time this year when it meets in two week's time.

"I have little doubt that the economy is turning around," said one trader on Wall Street.

P&G profits up

P&G, which makes products like Pampers nappies and Tide detergent, had said that its profits rose 9.4% in the first three months of 2001.

Core profits rose to more than $1bn, or 71 cents a share, from $923m, or 64 cents a share, a year earlier, at the top end of analysts' expectations.

Earlier in the day, a key US manufacturing survey had shown that the sector weakened for the ninth month in succession in April.

But analysts took comfort in the fact that the National Association of Purchasing Management's monthly index had stabilised since posting its steepest decline in January.

Most of the European markets were closed for May Day, with the FTSE seeing thin volumes of shares traded.

London closed down 38.9 points, or 0.7%, at 5,928.

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01 May 01 | Business
US manufacturing remains weak
01 May 01 | Business
P&G sees earnings rise
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