US stocks: Wall Street rises; eBay, Netflix push Nasdaq to record high

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Updated: July 18, 2015 8:58:57 AM

Wall Street ended stronger on Thursday, with the Nasdaq up more than 1 percent at a record high after earnings reports from eBay and Netflix boosted optimism.

US stocksDespite early, upbeat results this week, U.S. companies are expected to post their worst sales decline in nearly six years in the second quarter, while profit is expected to have fallen 2.9 percent, according to Thomson Reuters estimates. (Reuters)

The Nasdaq composite hit a new record high on Friday on strong results from Google while weak energy stocks weighed on the Dow and S&P 500.

Google surged over 16.8 percent to a record high of $703, a day after reporting strong ad revenue growth. Google’s Class A shares were on track for their largest one-day percentage gain since April 2008.

Facebook rose nearly 5 percent to a record high of $95.39 on hopes that it could mirror Google’s ad growth. Etsy spiked 23 percent thanks to a nod from Google during its conference call.

But a drop in oil prices limited gains on the broader stock market, with the S&P 500 energy index down 0.91 percent to its lowest level since January 2013. Exxon was down 0.34 percent and Chevron lost down 1.2 percent. The utilities index dropped 0.92 percent.

Some on Wall Street were cautiously optimistic about upcoming quarterly reports after results this week that came in above expectations.

“It’s going to be better than what the consensus numbers were pointing to,” said Kurt Brunner, a portfolio manager at Swarthmore Group in Philadelphia. “Our economy is doing okay. We’re not growing at 5 percent but we have slow steady growth and I think that continues.”

At 2:35 p.m., the Dow Jones industrial average fell 49.44 points, or 0.27 percent, to 18,070.81.

The S&P 500 gained 0.4 points, or 0.02 percent, to 2,124.69 and the Nasdaq Composite added 39.24 points, or 0.76 percent, to 5,202.43, a record high.

Boeing fell 1.02 percent and was the biggest drag on the Dow after it said it will take a second-quarter charge related to problems with its KC-46 aerial refueling tanker aircraft program.

General Electric shares rose 0.9 percent after raising its 2015 outlook for its industrial manufacturing businesses.

The technology index was the sole gainer among the 10 major S&P 500 indexes. It rose 1.56 percent, boosted by Google.

The three major indexes were poised to end the week higher following strong earnings reports from most of the blue-chip companies, such as Netflix and eBay.

The dollar was on track for its biggest weekly gain in two months on the likelihood of a Federal Reserve rate hike this year. However, a strong dollar reduces the value of U.S. companies’ overseas income.

U.S. companies have been expected to post their worst sales decline in nearly six years in the second quarter, in part due to the strong dollar. Profit is expected to have fallen 2.9 percent, according to Thomson Reuters estimates.

Declining issues outnumbered advancing ones on the NYSE by 2,108 to 900. On the Nasdaq, 1,740 issues fell and 1,011 advanced.

The S&P 500 was posting 18 new 52-week highs and 25 new lows; the Nasdaq was recording 86 new highs and 74 new lows.


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