Stocks Close Higher for Sixth Straight Week
Stocks closed higher despite some selling in the final half hour of trading, giving the market its sixth straight weekly gain and its longest weekly winning streak since 2007.
A late sell-off pared major indexes' gains to just a few points: The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 5.90, or 0.1 percent, to close at 8,131.33. The S&P 500 rose 0.5 percent and the Nasdaq added 0.2 percent.
Investors were encouraged by better-than-expected results from General Electric and Citigroup, and the best reading on consumer sentiment since September but earnings worries nagged the market, particularly after a warning from Google.
Still, all three major indexes finished higher fore the week, with the Dow gaining about 50 points, the S&P adding about 10 points and the Nasdaq rising about 20 points.
General Electric shares rose 1 percent after the conglomerate beat its earnings target with a profit of 26 cents a share but narrowly missed revenue expectations, reporting revenue dropped 9 percent to $38.4 billion. GE is the parent of CNBC.
An early rally in Citigroup shares fizzled after the bank posted a loss of 18 cents a share, nearly half the 34 cent-loss expected. Shares ended down 9 percent.
Bank of America wobbled but ended up 2.5 percent ahead of the bank's earnings, which are due out on Monday. After taking a beating recently, Bank of America shares quietly eclipsed $10 this week.
Also in Dow country, General Motors shares ended down 4.1 percent after CEO Fritz Henderson warned that the auto maker will likely have to file for bankruptcy protection.
Google gained 1 percent after the Internet giant topped earnings forecasts, though its warning that the economic environment remains tough sent a ripple of selling through tech following a stellar performance on Wednesday.
"We're still basically in uncharted territory,'' Google CEO Eric Schmidt said on a conference call. "Google is absolutely feeling the impact. Users are still searching but they're buying less. Ultimately, what that really means is the ads are converting less," he said.
But Apple shares rose 1.6 percent ahead of earnings from the iPhone maker, due out next week.
Dryships surged 30 percent a day after the carrier company said it raised $500 million in capital.
And McDonald's gained 2.5 percent after the fast-food chain's CEO told CNBC he saw "some thawing" in economic conditions.
Elsewhere in the consumer sector, Deutsche Bank said Procter & Gamble, Colgate-Palmolive and Kimberly-Clark were undervalued at current levels.
Trading was active on the New York Stock Exchange, with about 1.95 billion shares changing hands. Advancers outpaced decliners, 2 to 1.
The week was a sort of tug-of-war as investors juggled some glimmering signs of hope for the economy with worries about earnings.
American Express had the most positive impact on the Dow for a second straight week, gaining 16 percent this week. Chevron had the most negative impact, falling 5 percent, as oil dropped nearly 4 percent this week, settling at $50.33 a barrel.
Overall, financials were the best-performing sector, jumping 4 percent this week. Telecom was the most negative, falling 1 percent, led by Qwest .
Next week, earnings go full throttle, with reports from Bank of America, Coca-Cola , Merck , Yahoo , AT&T , Boeing , McDonald's , Morgan Stanley , ConocoPhillips , Microsoft , Amazon and American Express , among others.
--Reuters contributed to this article.
On Tap for Next Week:
MONDAY: Fed's Evans speaks; leading indicators; Earnings from Bank of America, Halliburton, Eli Lilly, IBM, Boston Scientific, Texas Instruments
TUESDAY: Earnings from Caterpillar, Coca-Cola, Merck, Schering-Plough, Dupont, United Tech, Delta Airlines, Lockheed Martin, State Street, United Health, US Bancrop, Yahoo, Broadcom, Capital One
WEDNESDAY: Weekly mortgage applications; weekly crude inventories; Earnings from AT&T, Boeing, McDonald's, Morgan Stanley, Wells Fargo, Altria, Ingersoll-Rand, Kimberly-Clark, Apple, eBay, Qualcomm and Yum! Brands
THURSDAY: Weekly jobless claims; existing-home sales; Earnings from Conoco-Phillips, GlaxoSmithKline, Pepsi, UPS, Fifth Third, Marriott, PNC Financial, SunTrust, Union Pacific, US Air, Microsoft, Amazon, AmEx and Burlington Northern
FRIDAY: G-7 meeting in Washington; durable-goods orders; new-home sales; Earnings from 3M,Honeywell, Schlumberger and Xerox
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