by Marc Bastow | April 22, 2013 4:59 pm
After big losses last week, investors hoping for a bounce back were rewarded on Monday. Even some disappointing news from Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) and the housing sector couldn’t hold the major indices down.
By the closing bell, the Nasdaq was up 0.86% at 3,233.55, while the S&P 500 gained 0.47% to 1,562.50. The Dow Jones Industrial Average sloughed off early losses to gain 0.14%, closing at 14,567.17.
Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) gained almost 7% on the day as investors anticipated a strong after-hours earnings release. The enthusiasm was rewarded; shares gapped up more than 23% after the company announced a net profit of 5 cents per share, ahead of estimates and well ahead of last year’s losses.
NFLX also added 3 million new streaming “members,” helped by the popularity of its original series, House of Cards. That brings the total members to 36 million.
That was better news than Caterpillar missed profit and revenue forecasts and trimmed its earnings outlook for the year, citing a slowdown in mining. However some of the bad news was already baked in for investors. Plus, CAT said it will buy back up to $1 billion in shares, helping to move shares ahead just under 3% by the end of the day.
Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) rose just under 4% on the day after it was reported that activist investor group ValueAct Capital purchased $2 billion worth of shares in the company, making it one of the top 15 shareholders. MSFT is up just over 15% since the start of the year.
Meanwhile, General Electric (NYSE:GE) was the biggest loser on the Dow after JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM) downgraded the stock to “neutral” after a three-year run as a “buy.” The reason? Concerns of slower growth and shrinking margins. GE lost almost 2% on the day.
Notable earnings announcements for Tuesday include the much anticipated release from Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL), in addition to DuPont (NYSE:DD), Lockheed Martin (NYSE:LMC), and United Technologies (NYSE:UTX).
Marc Bastow is an Assistant Editor at InvestorPlace.com. As of this writing he is long AAPL, GE and MSFT.
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