* Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Macy's rise after results
* Popeyes up after Restaurant Brands agrees to buy company
* Indexes up: Dow 0.45 pct, S&P 0.47 pct, Nasdaq 0.26 pct
(Updates to early afternoon)
By Yashaswini Swamynathan
Feb 21 U.S. stocks hit record intraday highs on
Tuesday amid gains across sectors as strong earnings from top
retailers underscored the strength of the U.S. economy.
One in every six stocks on the S&P 500 hit a new 52-week
high as a rally sparked by President Donald Trump's promise of
tax reforms showed no sign of fading despite concerns around
The index is trading at 19.7 times trailing 12-month
earnings, above the long-term average of 17.2 times, according
to Thomson Reuters Datastream.
"There is no doubt in anyone's mind that the market has
become over extended and is due for a pullback," said Quincy
Krosby, market strategist at Prudential Financial in Newark, New
"That said, when you have this kind of momentum, it is very
hard to sit on the sidelines."
In the one month of Trump's presidency, the S&P 500 hit
record intraday highs 10 times, gained 3.9 percent and surpassed
$20 trillion in market capitalization.
Robust earnings have added to the momentum. Overall profit
for S&P 500 companies is estimated to have risen 7.5 percent in
the latest quarter - the biggest rise since the fourth quarter
Wal-Mart's shares were among the top stocks on the
Dow, rising 3.2 percent after the company reported
higher-than-expected U.S. sales.
Department store bellwether Macy's and home
improvement chain Home Depot rose after the companies
posted profits that topped estimates.
At 12:33 a.m. ET (1733 GMT), the Dow Jones Industrial
Average was up 93.67 points, or 0.45 percent, at
20,717.72, the S&P 500 was up 11.09 points, or 0.47
percent, at 2,362.25 and the Nasdaq Composite was up
15.30 points, or 0.26 percent, at 5,853.88.
All 11 major S&P sectors were higher on Tuesday, led by a
0.98 percent gain in the energy index as oil prices
Popeyes Louisiana Kitchen jumped 19 percent to
$78.80 after Restaurant Brands agreed to acquire the
quick-service restaurant chain for $1.8 billion.
Freeport was the biggest loser on the S&P, dropping
5.5 percent after the miner warned on Monday it could take the
Indonesian government to arbitration and seek damages over a
dispute that has halted operations at a copper mine.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 1,983
to 917. On the Nasdaq, 1,539 issues rose and 1,259 fell.
The S&P 500 index showed 87 new 52-week highs and no new
lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 193 new highs and 22 new lows.
(Reporting by Yashaswini Swamynathan in Bengaluru; Editing by