* Chinese factories expand for first time since December
* U.S. manufacturing growth sturdy
* Indexes up: Dow 1 pct, S&P 0.9 pct, Nasdaq 1.4 pct (Updates to afternoon session)
By Angela Moon
NEW YORK, July 1 (Reuters) - Wall Street rose on Tuesday, with the Dow within a whisker of a 17,000 milestone and the S&P 500 at yet another record, as manufacturing activity picked up in the U.S. and Asia and boosted optimism about the health of the global economy.
The blue chip Dow index rose more than 1 percent to just below 17,000, led by gains in IBM and Visa Inc, which were up 3 percent and 2.1 percent, respectively.
Financial data firm Markit said its final U.S. Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index rose to 57.3 in June, the highest since May 2010, although it was slightly lower than the preliminary read of 57.5.
A separate report from the Institute for Supply Management showed its index of national factory activity was at 55.3, little changed from May's 55.4 reading.
"The basic message is that it's pretty much the same level as May so that's very positive news for the U.S. manufacturing," said Anthony Karydakis, chief economic strategist at Miller Tabak in New York.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 169.24 points or 1.01 percent, to 16,995.84, the S&P 500 gained 17.89 points or 0.91 percent, to 1,978.12 and the Nasdaq Composite added 61.24 points or 1.39 percent, to 4,469.42.
Twitter shares jumped 3.6 percent to $42.46 on news that a former Goldman Sachs executive would become the company's new chief financial officer while current CFO Mike Gupta will become senior vice president of strategic investments. Twitter's new CFO, Anthony Noto, was a managing director in Goldman Sachs' technology, media and telecom investment banking group.
Amicus Therapeutics shares rose 22.2 percent to $4.08 after it said it was on track to report data from a late-stage trial of a genetic disorder drug, triggering speculation the data will be positive. The stock was upgraded by both Janney Montgomery Scott and Leerink Swann.
Other research notes also affected stocks. Urban Outfitters fell 0.9 percent to $33.55 after a downgrade at Wedbush, and Netflix hit a record high after being upgraded at Goldman Sachs. It was up 6 percent at $467.13.
Positive data from Asia helped buoy investors' confidence in the health of the global economy.
China's final reading of the HSBC/Markit purchasing managers' index (PMI) for June rose to 50.7 from May's 49.4, edging past the 50-point level that separates growth from contraction for the first time since December.
Manufacturing in Japan, the world's third-biggest economy, also gained pace in June, fueled by improving demand at home; but euro zone growth faltered as Germany, the region's top economy, slowed. (Editing by Bernadette Baum)