US stocks mildly higher at midday on strong earnings reports

GMT 05:52 2015 Tuesday ,21 July

Arab Today, arab today US stocks mildly higher at midday on strong earnings reports

US stocks
New York - XINHUA

U.S. stocks traded higher in the morning session on Monday as Wall Street cheered over generally upbeat second-quarter earnings reports.

By midday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 26.85 points, or 0.15 percent, to 18,113.30. The S&P 500 added 2.55 points, or 0. 12 percent, to 2,129.19. The Nasdaq Composite Index gained 9.51 points, or 0.18 percent, to 5,219.65.

With no major economic reports due out on Monday, the market's focus shifted to quarterly results from big companies.

Morgan Stanley edged up 0.1 percent around midday after reporting slightly better-than-expected quarterly results. The bank posted a net income of 1.8 billion U.S. dollars on net revenues of 9.7 billion for the second quarter, compared with a net income of 1.9 billion on revenues of 8.6 billion a year ago.

Halliburton Co. jumped 2.1 percent around midday on Monday following the release of quarterly results that also beat Wall Street forecasts. The oilfield services provider announced that its income from continuing operations for the second quarter of 2015 was 380 million dollars, or 0.44 dollars per diluted share, excluding special items.

Latest data from Thomson Reuters showed that the S&P 500 companies' blended earnings in the second quarter of 2015 are expected to decrease 2.1 percent year on year, while revenue is forecast to decline 4.0 percent. Excluding the energy sector, however, the earnings growth estimate is a 5.4-percent gain, with a revenue increase of 1.6 percent.

In overseas news, Greek banks reopened on Monday after a three- week holiday, introduced to avert a collapse of the country's banking system amidst fears of an imminent sovereign debt default and the so-called "Grexit" from the eurozone.

However, as capital controls remain in place and new Value Added Tax increases came into effect as of Monday under the new bailout agreement, Greeks will have to continue to make do with limited sources.

On Friday, a solid earnings report from Google pushed the Nasdaq to a new intraday and closing high at 5,210.16 and 5,210.14, respectively.

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