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Stocks Rally On Strong Earnings; Apple (AAPL) Jumps

 October 16, 2012 04:35 PM

(By Balachander) U.S. stocks rallied following stronger-than-forecast quarterly earnings from companies including, Goldman Sachs and Johnson & Johnson.

The S&P 500 Index jumped 1.03 percent to end at 1,454.92. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 0.95 percent to finish at 13,551.78. The Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 1.21 percent to close at 3,101.17.

On the U.S. economic front, data showed the core consumer price index rose 2.0 percent in September, matching economists' expectations. The headline index also increased 2.0 percent, coming in above expectations of a rise of 1.9 percent.
Another report showed industrial production in the U.S. rose 0.4 percent in September, after a fall of 1.4 percent in the prior month, topping economists expectations of an increase of 0.2 percent.

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In corporate news, Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) jumped 2.37 percent. The world's most valuable company has invited the media for a "special event" on October 23, where it is rumored to unveil a smaller version of its iPad tablet dubbed "iPad Mini."

Intel Corp. (NASDAQ:INTC) reported a fall in quarterly earnings and revenue as macro-economic concerns continue to mute growth and recovery in the semiconductor sector. In extended trading, shares retreated 2.19 percent. Results, however, topped market expectations.

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International Business Machines Corp. (NYSE:IBM) shed 3.47 percent in extended trading after the company's quarterly revenue missed market expectations.

Citigroup Inc. (NYSE:C), which posted better-than-estimated earnings for the third quarter on Monday, said CEO Vikram Pandit has stepped down effective immediately. The bank named Michael Corbat as its CEO. Shares rose 1.61 percent.

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE:GS) reported better-than-expected quarterly earnings on higher revenue. In addition, the board raised its quarterly dividend. Shares fell 1.01 percent.
Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ) gained 1.38 percent after reporting an unexpected increase in quarterly earnings amid strong growth of key products and the launch of new products. The healthcare company lifted its forecast for the full year.

Murphy Oil Corp. (NYSE:MUR) jumped 8.03 percent after the El Dorado, Arkansas-based oil and gas explorer announced plans to spin off its U.S. refined fuels business.

Kroger Co. (NYSE:KR) advanced 4.27 percent after shares of the grocery retailer were upgraded to "buy" from "hold" by Jefferies Group. The supermarket operator lifted its long-term earnings per share (EPS) growth target to 8 percent to 11 percent from 6 percent to 8 percent projected earlier.

Fossil Inc. (NASDAQ:FOSL) surged 7.31 percent. Citigroup upgraded shares of the designer of consumer fashion accessories to "buy".

Mattel Inc. (NASDAQ:MAT) jumped 5.04 percent after the toy maker reported a rise in quarterly earnings due to jump in gross margins and sales growth.
Bankrate Inc. (NYSE:RATE) plunged 22.34 percent after the personal finance content publisher guided third quarter below Wall Street view and lowered full-year revenue growth estimate.
WD-40 Co. (NASDAQ:WDFC) retreated 6.64 percent after the consumer products company reported fourth-quarter results below Wall Street estimates.
Diebold Inc.
(NYSE:DBD) slumped 7.29 percent after the security systems company slashed its forecast for the full year, partly citing customer delays related to its financial self-service business in Brazil.
Global Markets:

European markets ended sharply higher amid reports that Spain is preparing to request a bailout package. Germany's DAX gained 1.58 percent to close at 7,376.27. France's CAC40 jumped 2.36 percent to finish at 3,500.94. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 gained 1.12 percent to end at 5,870.54.
Among Asian markets, China's Shanghai Stock Exchange Composite Index inched up 0.01 percent to end at 2,098.81. Japan's Nikkei 225 added 1.44 percent to finish at 8.701.31. Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index rose 0.28 percent to close at 21,207.07. India's BSE Sensex finished at 18,577.70, down 0.73 percent.

Commodity & Currency Scan:

Crude oil futures gained 0.25 percent to $92.08 per barrel, and natural gas futures dropped 1.41 percent to $3.437 per million metric British thermal units. Gold futures rose 0.64 percent to $1,748.8 per ounce and silver futures added 0.72 percent to $32.98 per ounce.  

In the currency market, the euro rose 0.80 percent against the U.S. dollar to 1.3053. The British pound advanced 0.27 percent against the greenback to 1.6114, and the dollar added 0.38 percent against the Japanese yen to 78.9000.



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