US shares finish higher
Dow Jones closes up 174
Corporate earnings bolster stocks
US stocks finished higher as a load of earnings and a tide of rising sentiment pushed global markets up.
The Dow Jones finished 174 points up - at 20,578. The S&P500 closed over 17 higher at 2,355.
The tech heavy Nasdaq Index closed 53 ahead at 5,916.
US crude recovered somewhat after losses over the last 48 hours, to be down 0.36% to $50.26 a barrel.
In Toronto, the TSX index closed around 72 higher at 15,625.
A flurry of corporate of US corporate earnings cheered Wall Street, it seemed, as did data showing that initial jobless claims rose by 10,000 to a still-low 244,000 in mid-April.
The number of people collecting unemployment checks also fell to a 17-year low last week.
Footlocker Inc (NYSE:FL) rose over 5% despite the sportswear firm issuing a profit warning.
United States Steel Corp (NYSE: X) surged over 7% to $30.51 as it emerged that President Trump has reportedly ordered an investigation into whether foreign steel products are hurting national security.
General Motors (NYSE:GM) added 0.92% to $34.10 as it said Venezuela has seized its plant in the country.
US stocks are back in rally mode and the Dow is up 212 points at mid-session.
The surge on Wall Street comes as European indices are also climbing higher, brushing aside worries over geopolitical issues.
It also comes as the markets are soaking up a raft of corporate earnings reports today.
The Dow Jones is up 1.05% at the time of writing at 20,619; the S&P500 gained over 21 to 2,360 and the tech heavy Nasdaq added almost 60 points to stand at 5,922.
Online auction giant EBay Inc (NASDAQ: EBAY) droped 3.15% after it reported earnings, but investment group Blackstone Group (NYSE: BX ) added 1.4% to $30.49, while shoe and sportswear firm Foot Locker Inc (NYSE:FL) added over 5% to $76.55 even after it issued a profit warning.
The NYSE-listed firm expects its first-quarter earnings to be US$1.36 to US$1.39 per share, equal to or just below last year, well below the current consensus forecast for US$1.47.
Foot Locker said first-quarter same-store sales are expected to increase in the low-single-digit percentage range, with the current estimate for a 2.7% rise.
US shares were on the front foot at the open, as the dollar slipped as traders weighed various catalysts.
This Sunday sees the first round of voting in the French elections, while the UK is poised for a summer general election after lawmakers gave PM Theresa May their backing yesterday.
Tensions around North Korea and Syria are in focus while all the Fed talk of tighter monetary policy seem ps to have fallen off the radar recently.
The Dow Jones is up almost 70 at 20,474 at the time of writing, the S&P 500 is ahead by 7.42 to 2,345 , while the tech heavy Nasdaq exchange is up over 27 to 5,899.
US crude has also nudged higher, after data showed production in the US of the black stuff was on the up..
In Toronto, the biggest index - the TSX- was also higher at the open - ahead over 87 points at 15,640.
On Wall Street, the biggest gainer on S&P500 was CSX Corp (NYSE: CSX), which gained over 7% to $50.40 as it is set to report quarterly earnings after hours. Analysts expect revenue of $2.76 billion and earnings per share (EPS) of $0.43.
US stocks are poised to open higher on Thursday after a mixed finish on Wednesday, as crude prices fell on US production data.
The benchmark Dow Jones shed 118 points yesterday to close at 20,404. The broader based S&P500 fell just over four points at 2,388, but the tech heavy Nasdaq exchange bucked the trend and closed around 13 points higher at 5,863.
US crude (West Texas Intermediate) - skidded nearly 4% lower as data showed that crude oil production in the USA was at its highest level since June 2015 and stockpiles were declining slower than anticipated.
This clearly makes it harder to cut the oversupply and give a boost to the oil price, which recent moves from OPEC have been focused on.
US spot crude has today recovered somewhat and is up 0.89% at the time of writing, at $50.89 a barrel.
On Wall Street today, Dow futures are trading 41 points ahead, the S&P500 is up 6.5, while futures on the tech heavy Nasdaq exchange is almost 19 points higher.
In focus today will be the fallout from the eBay (NASDAQ:EBAY) results and communications giant Verizon (NYSE: VZ), which is set to post its results before the bell.
Search engine Yahoo said this week its takeover by Verizon will be completed in June and traders will be looking for furtherf confirmation of this.