Brendan McDermid | Reuters: A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York.
•The Dow hit another record high and closed in on 22,000
•The Dow, along with the Nasdaq and the S&P, posted strong monthly gains in July as corporate quarterly results have mostly topped expectations
U.S. stocks traded higher on Tuesday, the first trading day of August, as the Dow Jones industrial average approached another milestone.
The 30-stock index rose about 75 points to a new record, with Goldman Sachs contributing the most gains. The Dow also traded near 22,000. The S&P 500 rose 0.2 percent, with real estate and financials leading advancers. The Nasdaq composite climbed 0.2 percent.
Dow futures briefly signaled the index would break above 22,000 for the first time. The Dow is coming off its strongest monthly performance since February, having risen 2.54 percent. Shares of Boeing contributed the lions share of the gains, adding more than 300 points to the index.
The Dow, along with the Nasdaq and the S&P, notched record highs in July as investors shrugged off news of the turmoil in Washington as well as geopolitical tensions.
"The market wanted to go up and did, posting five new closing highs in July, as it continued to watch the Floor, rather than the man or groups in Washington," Howard Silverblatt, senior Index analyst at S&P Dow Jones Indices.
Earnings season is well under way with most companies topping expectations. Seventy-three percent of the S&P 500 companies that had reported as of Friday had topped estimates on both the top and bottom lines, according to data from FactSet.