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One might have expected that reaching a new market milestone would incite some caution. But after setting a new all-time high with its close last night, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI ) is still headed skyward. Breaking through the 14,300 mark in early trading, the index is still poised 28 points above yesterday's close as of 11:55 a.m. ET. Perhaps news of the Dow's record-breaking climb has finally brought back some investors who lacked confidence in the market.
Positive economic news continued this morning with the ADP jobs report, which showed steady improvement in private-sector job growth. Though the 150,000 jobs added in February was the lowest amount since October, it beat analyst expectations. Small businesses generated the most new positions, adding 77,000 jobs.
1 sector to rule them all
If you look at how the 30 Dow components are doing today, you'll see a very clear pattern: Tech is up. Hewlett-Packard (NYSE: HPQ ) is leading the way this morning, up 3.14%. The computer-manufacturer held a webcast last night highlighting its new big-data software product, Vertica. The company's product works in a "columnar" form, allowing queries to work against multiple data points at the same time, producing faster retrieval for analysis than a traditional relational database approach. In its infrastructure business, HP is adding new Texas Instrument ARM server processor options into its new "Project Moonshot" hyperscale servers -- a big blow to Intel (NASDAQ: INTC ) , which continues to fight for marketshare against ARM processors.
Despite HP's new plans for its Moonshot servers, Intel is up this morning by a solid 0.7%. The tech giant recently announced a new technology, DAAS, or Display as a Service, which may change the way people use their tech products. The service will disconnect the hardwire between a video source and the display, allowing people to view their phones or tablets on their big-screen TVs.The technology may also allow multiple devices to be linked to the same display. Intel has also announced that Chinese smartphone manufacturer ZTE will be using its new Atom Z2580 platform for its newest phone line.
Cisco Systems (NASDAQ: CSCO ) is also up 1.29% so far in trading. The network giant is one of the tech companies teaming up with European lawmakers to help improve technology training for the European workforce. With unemployment in Europe hitting new highs, it is important for workers to beef up their training for increasingly tech-centered jobs. Other Cisco news from Europe comes from Belgian cable company Telenet, which announced that it will be using Cisco's Videoscape Snowflake user interface to provide increased user function for customers browsing through its available content.
Outside of tech
One company that doesn't fit today's trend is Bank of America (NYSE: BAC ) . The bank is moving ever closer to the Fed's release of its stress-test results, and many analysts are confident that BAC will pass with flying colors. If that is the case, investors may be trying to jump on board before the company announces an increased dividend.
Bank of America's stock doubled in 2012. Is there more yet to come? With significant challenges still ahead, it's critical to have a solid understanding of this megabank before adding it to your portfolio. In The Motley Fool's premium research report on B of A, analysts Anand Chokkavelu, CFA, and Matt Koppenheffer, Financials bureau chief, lift the veil on the bank's operations, including detailing three reasons to buy and three reasons to sell. Click here now to claim your copy.