Stocks Rise On Strong Earnings

Earnings growth has been strong across U.S. companies, which have benefited from higher revenue overseas. The government also said fewer people applied for unemployment benefits last week, evidence that layoffs are slowing.

Stocks are closing higher on stronger corporate earnings and signs the job market is improving.

Software company Red Hat Inc. and chip maker Micron Technology Inc. reported profits on Thursday that beat expectations. Earnings growth has been strong across U.S. companies, which have benefited from higher revenue overseas.

The government also said fewer people applied for unemployment benefits last week, evidence that layoffs are slowing.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 85 points, or 0.7 percent, to close at 12,171. The S&P 500 index rose 12, or 0.9 percent, to 1,310. The Nasdaq rose 38 points, or 1.4 percent, to 2,736. All three have gained more than 2 percent this week.

Two shares rose for every one that fell on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume was 4 billion shares.


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