October 20, 2017 / 7:21 PM / a year ago

US STOCKS-Wall St gains, progress in Trump's tax plan lifts hopes

* Senate passes budget plan that could pave the way for tax cuts

* PayPal jumps after upbeat earnings forecast

* Indexes up: Dow 0.6 pct, S&P 0.4 pct, Nasdaq 0.4 pct (Updates to late afternoon)

By Caroline Valetkevitch

Oct 20 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose on Friday after the Senate passed a budget resolution, lifting hopes that President Donald Trump’s tax-cut plan may move forward.

The Senate’s approval late Thursday of a 2018 budget blueprint could pave the way for Republicans to pursue a tax-cut package without Democratic support.

The S&P 500 and the Dow, which climbed above 23,000 this week, were on track to post gains for a sixth straight week and the Nasdaq for a fourth straight week.

Some investors saw little reason to worry about the extended climb.

“This has been a healthy advance. It has been a slow, steady grind upward. There’s been extraordinarily low volatility,” said Hank Smith, co-chief investment officer at Haverford Trust in Radnor, Pennsylvania.

Consumer confidence remains elevated and regulatory relief has helped, he noted.

Financial stocks - expected to benefit from the administration’s proposed policies - rose 1.1 percent and were the best performer of the 11 major S&P sectors.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 129.65 points, or 0.56 percent, to 23,292.69, the S&P 500 gained 11.28 points, or 0.44 percent, to 2,573.38 and the Nasdaq Composite added 26.54 points, or 0.4 percent, to 6,631.61.

Third-quarter earnings season is under way and 183 S&P 500 companies are expected to report earnings next week. So far, more than 70 percent of the 88 S&P 500 companies have beaten profit expectations.

Shares of General Electric reversed an early drop and were last up 0.1 percent, although the company’s results badly missed Wall Street’s expectations.

PayPal’s stock rose 4.9 percent after upbeat earnings.

Celgene slumped more than 10 percent after the company abandoned testing a drug to treat Crohn’s disease.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by a 1.37-to-1 ratio; on Nasdaq, a 1.52-to-1 ratio favored advancers. (Additional reporting by Sruthi Shankar in Bengaluru; Editing by Arun Koyyur and Dan Grebler)

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