Thursday, April 15, 2010

Intel Earnings Spark Big Move

Stocks closed sharply higher on Wednesday after Intel (INTC) released 1t quarter results that handily beat street estimates.

The Dow Jones Industrial average sprinted to its best close in 19 months. The NASDAQ and S&P 500 each cleared psychological hurdles at 2500 and 1200, respectively. Investors were cheered by strong earnings results, a benign reading on inflation and optimistic sentiment ion the trading floor.

The government announced that Consumer prices (CPI) grew at an annualized rate of just 0.1%, with core CPI (excluding food and energy components) flat for March. This spurred speculation that the Fed would keep rates at their absurdly low levels into the third quarter, though deflationists warned that the numbers reflect not a recovery, but a flat-lining in economic growth.

Investors were not dissuaded, however, boosting shares of technology stocks ahead of the broader market.

Dow 11,123.11, +103.69 (0.94%)
NASDAQ 2,504.86, +38.87 (1.58%)
S&P 500 1,210.65, +13.35 (1.12%)
NYSE Composite 7,728.96, +90.61 (1.24%)

Advancing issues blew past decliners, 5014-1459, a margin of better-than 3:1. New highs erupted to 1222, with only 95 stocks making new 52-week lows. Volume was impressive on the NASDAQ, but subdued on the NYSE, an ongoing trend.

NYSE Volume 4,512,912,000
NASDAQ Volume 2,799,845,500

Commodities joined in the rally, with crude oil futures gaining $2.84, to $85.84. Gold was higher by $6.20, to, $1,159.00, while silver added 16 cents, to $18.40.

The Dow is up 12% since the February 8 bottom at 9908. Investors will be keeping a close eye on initial unemployment claims on Thursday, as employment and housing continue to lag the stock market. Any good news from either sector will help keep the rally going.

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