By Noel Randewich
(Reuters) – Wall Street ended stronger on Thursday, with the Nasdaq up more than 1 percent at a record high after earnings reports from eBay <EBAY.O> & Netflix <NFLX.O> boosted optimism.
Google's shares jumped more than 13 percent after the bell following a better-than-expected profit report.
p>Sentiment was moreover bolstered after the Greek parliament voted in favor of austerity measures. Uninspiring quarterly reports from Goldman Sachs <GS.N> & UnitedHealth <UNH.N>, however, capped gains on the Dow.
The S&P has surged almost 4 percent from eight days ago, when widespread fears approximately Greece & a Chinese stock selloff pushed the index to its lowest level since March.
"It just proves the U.S. market continues to be resilient in the face of what seems like an endless list of global worries," said Jake Dollarhide, chief executive officer of Longbow Asset Management in Tulsa, Oklahoma.
The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> rose 70.08 points, or 0.39 percent, to 18,120.25. The S&P 500 <.SPX> gained 16.89 points, or 0.8 percent, to 2,124.29.
The Nasdaq Composite <.IXIC> added 64.24 points, or 1.26 percent, to end at 5,163.18, just beating its previous record-high close of 5,160.095 on June 23. The S&P was moreover near a record high.
Google's Class A shares <GOOGL.O> jumped 13.5 percent to $683 after the web search leader posted a better-than-expected profit for the first time in six quarters.
That helped extend Thursday's gains in Nasdaq 100 e-mini futures <NQc1> to 1.7 percent from 1.1 percent just before Google reported, suggesting the Nasdaq Composite may open stronger on Friday & potentially extend its record.
Nine of the 10 major S&P 500 sectors were higher, with the utilities index's <.SPLRCU> 1.54 percent advance leading the gainers. The materials index <.SPLRCM> was the lone laggard, down 0.24 percent.
The S&P 500 has recently traded at 16.8 times forward 12-months' earnings, above the 10-year average of 14.7 times, according to StarMine data.
Despite early, upbeat results this week, U.S. companies are expected to post their worst sales decline in nearly six years in the second quarter, while profit is expected to have fallen 2.9 percent, according to Thomson Reuters estimates.
"What this season confirms is that we are in a modest growth & modest inflation environment," said Scott Wren, senior global equity strategist at Wells Fargo Investment Institute in St. Louis.
Netflix surged 18.02 percent to a record high of $115.81 a day after reporting strong subscribers numbers.
Citigroup reported its highest quarterly profit in eight years. Its shares rose 3.77 percent to a six-and-a-half year high of $58.59.
EBay <EBAY.O> rose 3.39 percent to a record high of $65.59 after reporting better-than-expected quarterly profit & announcing the sale of its enterprise business.
But Goldman fell 0.84 percent after posting its smallest quarterly profit in nearly four years, while UnitedHealth fell 0.74 percent after missing analysts' cost estimates.
Advancing issues outnumbered declines on the NYSE by 2,159 to 942; on the Nasdaq, 1,852 issues rose & 945 fell.
The S&P 500 posted 46 new 52-week highs & 13 new lows; the Nasdaq Composite recorded 182 new highs & 63 new lows.
Volume was light, with approximately 5.6 billion shares traded on U.S. exchanges, below the 6.6 billion average so far this month, according to BATS Global Markets.
(Editing by Nick Zieminski & Dan Grebler)