by Marc Bastow | July 18, 2013 4:56 pm
Strong earnings from the financial sector, a sharp drop in first-time unemployment claims and another day of Ben Bernanke testimony helped markets build on Wednesday’s momentum.
At Thursday’s end, the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 0.5% to close at a record 15548.54, while the S&P 500 also set a new high-water mark, up 0.5% to 1689.37. The Nasdaq finished ahead fractionally, closing at 3611.28.
Bank stocks ruled the day as Morgan Stanley (MS) capped a great second-quarter earnings season for the “Big Six” banks. MS announced a 42% rise in earnings and said the Federal Reserve would allow it to buy back $500 million in stock, prompting investors to send it more than 4% higher. Meanwhile, Bank of America (BAC) rose over 3% to finish at two-year highs, while Wells Fargo (WFC) and JPMorgan (JPM) each finished ahead by roughly 2%.
UnitedHealth Group (UNH) stock rose more than 6% after announcing earnings that came in above estimates and raising its guidance for the remainder of the year.
Overstock.com (OSTK) saw its shares rocket ahead over 22%, breaking through to a record close after reporting earnings that beat both the year-ago period’s profits and Wall Street estimates.
In the tech space, IBM (IBM) headed up by about 2% after Wednesday night’s earnings release showing top- and bottom-line improvement, while Intel (INTC) disappointed and slumped off 4%. Meanwhile, Dell (DELL) inched ahead more than 1% after the company postponed its vote on competing takeover plans.
Finally, shares of wireless manufacturer Nokia (NOK) were spared a bit after announcing a revenue miss, falling fractionally.
After-hours news was dominated by Google (GOOG) and Microsoft (MSFT).
Google’s earnings for Q2 slipped from $10.13 per share to $9.71 on revenues that grew to $14.1 billion, both figures falling short. Meanwhile, Microsoft earnings fell a penny per share year-over-year to 66 cents on revenues that improved 10% to $19.9 billion; again, both figures missed analyst expectations. Both stocks were off by roughly 5% in early after-hours trading.
Earnings notables for Friday include General Electric (GE) and Vodafone (VOD).
Marc Bastow is an Assistant Editor at InvestorPlace.com. As of this writing, he was long MSFT.
Source URL: http://investorplace.com/2013/07/banks-push-dow-sp-500-to-new-highs-thursdays-ip-market-recap/
Short URL: http://invstplc.com/1fvZTDG
Copyright ©2014 InvestorPlace Media, LLC. All rights reserved. 700 Indian Springs Drive, Lancaster, PA 17601.