U.S. stocks soar after upbeat start of Q4 earnings

January 14, 2015 6:22 am 

NEW YORK, Jan 14 — U.S. stocks bounced back in the morning session Tuesday following two days of declines, as investor sentiment was buoyed by the good start of the fourth- quarter earnings season.

At midday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average surged 193.88 points, or 1.10 percent, to 17,834.72. The S&P 500 gained 18.32 points, or 0.90 percent, to 2,046.58. The Nasdaq Composite Index advanced 63.09 points, or 1.35 percent, to 4,727.79.

Aluminum giant Alcoa Inc. released strong quarterly results after Monday's closing bell to unofficially kick off the earnings season.

Alcoa said it swung to profit in the fourth quarter of last year as transformation strengthened profitability. The company posted adjusted earnings of 33 cents per share for the past quarter, as revenue jumped 14 percent from a year ago to 6.4 billion U.S. dollars, topping market estimates.

Some major U.S. banks, including J.P. Morgan Chase & Co, Wells Fargo & Co. and Citigroup Inc., will also release their quarterly results this week.

According to Thomson Reuters, the fourth-quarter earnings of S& P 500 companies are expected to grow 3.7 percent year on year.

Positive economic data bolstered stocks' rebound. The National Federation of Independent Business said Tuesday that U.S. small business optimism perked up in December, with the Small Business Optimism Index rising 2.3 points to 100.4, the best reading since October 2006.

Meanwhile, U.S. job openings registered 4.97 million on the last business day of November, higher than October's reading of 4. 83 million, the Labor Department reported Tuesday.

U.S. stocks were little affected by the continued slide in oil prices Tuesday, as investors were weighing impact from positive corporate earnings and economic data against the free fall in oil prices.

Both Brent crude and U.S. crude dipped to near six-year lows Tuesday, with no sign of production cut from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries. (PNA/Xinhua)

FPV/JSD

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