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U.S. stocks open higher on upbeat earnings; Dow Jones up 0.69%

Stock MarketsApr 16, 2013 09:47AM ET
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Investing.com - U.S. stocks opened higher on Tuesday, after the release of mixed U.S. economic reports, as sentiment was supported by a string of upbeat earnings reports.

During early U.S. trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 0.69%, the S&P 500 index gained 0.76%, while the Nasdaq Composite index advanced 0.65%.

In a report, the Census Bureau said U.S. building permits rose by 0.902 million in March, less than the expected 0.940 million increase, after a 0.968 million rise the previous month.

The report added that housing starts in the U.S. rose by 1.036 million units last month, beating expectations for an increase of 0.930 million, after a 0.986 million rise in February.

Separately, official data showed that core consumer price inflation in the U.S. rose 0.1% in March, disappointing expectations for a 0.2% increase, after a 0.2% rise the previous month.

Consumer price inflation, including food and energy, fell 0.2% last month after a 0.7% rise in February, compared to expectations for a 0.1% gain.

Among earnings, Coca Cola shares surged 4.04%, after the company said first-quarter earnings beat estimates, boosted by a rise in sales in Europe and emerging markets.

Johnson & Johnson also gained ground after reporting quarterly earnings and revenue that exceeded expectations as growth of newer medicines for cancer, hepatitis C and blood clots reportedly offset declining sales of its treatments for heartburn and attention deficit disorder.

The news sent the company's shares up 0.73%.

On the downside, Goldman Sachs tumbled 1.11%, even as the U.S. lender reported first-quarter earnings that topped market expectations, helped by higher revenue in its investment banking arm.

Other financial stocks trended higher however, as JP Morgan advanced 0.72% and Bank of America jumped 1.59%, while Citigroup rallied 2.76%.

Meanwhile, HCA Holdings saw shares plummet 1.39% after data showed slower admission growth at the chain of hospitals it operates.

The for-profit U.S. hospital chain forecast revenue for the first quarter of USD8.44 billion, almost unchanged from a year earlier, below analysts estimates .

Other stocks in focus included Yahoo, due to report first-quarter earnings later in the day.

Across the Atlantic, European stock markets were mixed to higher. The EURO STOXX 50 edged up 0.07%, France’s CAC 40 inched 0.06% higher, Germany's DAX added 0.13%, while Britain's FTSE 100 slipped 0.20%.

During the Asian trading session, Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index declined 0.46%, while Japan’s Nikkei 225 Index dropped 0.41%.

Also Tuesday, the Federal Reserve said industrial production in the U.S. rose 0.4% in March, beating expectations for a 0.2% gain, after a 1.1% increase the previous month.

U.S. stocks open higher on upbeat earnings; Dow Jones up 0.69%

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