US Markets

Dow jumps more than 100 points to all-time high, rallies for a second day to start fourth quarter

Key Points
  • Tuesday marks the Dow's first record close since Sept. 21.
  • Intel climbs more than 3.5 percent to lift the Dow, while Boeing reaches an all-time high.
The Russell is at 'serious risk' regardless of trade agreement, says chief market strategist

The Dow Jones Industrial Average hit a record high on Tuesday as it rallied for a second day, boosted by gains in Intel and optimism around global trade.

The 30-stock index closed 122.73 points higher to 26,773.94 for its first record close since Sept. 21. Intel climbed more than 3.5 percent, while Boeing soared to an all-time high. These gains added to the 192-point pop in the Dow on Monday to start the fourth quarter.

The , closed flat, however, at 2,923.43 while the Nasdaq Composite fell half a percent to 7,999.55 as large-cap tech names fell more than 1 percent.

Amazon shares dropped 1.6 after the company announced it would raise its minimum wage to $15 per hour for all U.S. employees. Facebook, meanwhile, dropped nearly 2 percent.

Stocks were coming off strong gains from the previous session after Canada joined the U.S. and Mexico in a new trade deal.

The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, or "USMCA" for short, will see all three countries compromise on certain trade aspects. More market access will be granted to U.S. dairy farmers, while Canada has agreed to effectively cap automobile exports to the States.

"The market reaction suggests investors are less worried about a trade war," said Jennifer Ellison, principal at BOS. "It's more of a sigh of relief."

Dow surges, but the dark shadow of inflation is coming

Boeing climbed 1.1 percent, while Caterpillar gained 1.7 percent. The two stocks are seen as bellwethers for trade given their exposure overseas.

Now investors will be looking to China, to see if Beijing and Washington can compromise on certain trade elements.

Worries about Italy's budget also capped gains in the broader market.

Luigi Di Maio, the head of the Five Star Movement in Italy, defended the country's 2.4 percent deficit target for 2019. Di Maio accused European Union officials of deliberately upsetting capital markets through negative comments about the budget. "Some European institutions are playing ... at creating terrorism on the markets," Di Maio said.

"While Italy's budget plan is below France and less than the 3% threshold that triggers concern, … the worry is the lack of any cushion along with their massive debt pile and little economic growth," said Peter Boockvar, chief investment officer at Bleakley Advisory Group.

"But maybe the biggest risk is the negative feedback loop that is the Italian banking system that owns many billions of Italian bonds," Boockvar said.

On top of that, Claudio Borghi, a euroskeptic economist who chairs the budget committee of the lower house of Italy's parliament, said in a radio interview Tuesday that he was "truly convinced" most of the country's problems would be solved if it had its own currency.

—CNBC's Sam Meredith contributed to this report.