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If you have comments or questions about the Division of Student Affairs or our Web Pages, please contact us at 305-348-2797. Stocks rose on Thursday as Wall Street cheered the latest corporate profit results and pointed to comments from U. S. Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan as a sign the recession-slammed economy is near a rebound. Thursday marks the busiest day for companies in the Standard & Poor’s 500 index .
SPX to release earnings — 64 companies are expected to report in a single day. So far, 60 percent have reported profits that beat analysts’ forecasts, said market research firm Thomson Financial/First Call. That’s in line with the historical average. Even so, profits on average are down 21.
6 percent for the second straight quarter — the worst showing in a decade. Despite the fourth quarter’s dismal results, investors said comments in the reports are starting to signal a business pickup. “Greenspan told us things are looking better and that the big negatives on the economy last year are improving,” said Robert Barbera, chief economist for brokerage and asset management firm Hoenig & Co. “What we’re getting across most categories is news that the worst is behind us. ” The tech-laced Nasdaq .
IXIC rose 32 points, or 1. 71 percent, to 1,955. The blue-chip Dow Jones industrial average . DJI, gained 92 points, or 0. 95 percent, to 9,824.
The broader Standard & Poor’s 500 Index . SPX added 9 points, or 0. 83 percent, to 1,137, boosted by shares of makers of data-storage systems and chipmakers. More than 990 million shares traded on the Nasdaq, where 19 stocks rose for every 13 that fell.
About 750 million shares changed hands on the Big Board. Advancers trounced decliners by an average of 17 to 12. Greenspan’s testimony to the Senate Budget Committee boosted stocks after he said “there have been signs recently that some of the forces that have been restraining the economy over the past year are starting to diminish and that activity is beginning to firm. ” Nokia Corp. NOK. N also helped stocks gain after the world’s largest cellular phone maker unveiled a bigger-than-expected fourth-quarter profit on the back of strong Christmas sales of mobile phones.
The Finnish company also said it saw an improvement in conditions during the current year and stuck to its sales growth target. Shares rose $1. 34 to $23. 55.
“Nokia came out with better earnings and that’s the stuff that turned the market up,” said Lance Zipper, managing director of equity trading at Brean Murray & Co. “That’s a big stock and a big industry. ” EMC Corp. EMC. N, the world’s largest maker of data-storage systems, reported a net loss that was smaller than forecasts and said the firm’s cost-cutting was ahead of schedule.
Shares jumped $2. 44 to $17. “There are positive surprises on a number of fronts,” said Phil Dow, director of equity strategy for RBC Dain Rauscher. “You’ve had a number of companies with better-than-expected results and better commentary on how business is doing.
Nokia is one and EMC is another. ” It was a busy morning for holders of drug and health care stocks as a slew of companies reported quarterly financial results. Eli Lilly and Co. LLY. N reported lower profits in line with Wall Street forecasts, as it struggles to rebound from the loss of U.
S. patent protection over antidepressant Prozac, its flagship drug. Shares dropped $2. 37 to $73. 39.
Shares of Applied Biosystems Group ABI.N, which makes equipment