Friday, May 29, 2009

Wall Street Climbs On Economic Data, Caterpillar Jumps

. Friday, May 29, 2009

By stockOzone team

US stocks finished higher on Thursday as investors snapped up energy stocks amid hopes of economic recovery. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 96.53 points or 1.15% to finish at 8,500.33. The S&P 500 gained 12.31 points or 1.36% to end at 919.14. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 22.54 points or 1.29% to 1,774.33.

According to Commerce Department, US economy contracted at a revised 5.7% annual rate in the first quarter, after shrinking 6.3% in the fourth quarter. Economists expected the economy to contract at an annualized pace of 5.5%.

The University of Michigan/Reuters consumer sentiment index rose to 68.7 from 65.1 in April. Economists had projected a reading of 68.

Shares of the Coca Cola (NYSE: KO) jumped $226 or 4.82% to $49.16.

Caterpillar (NYSE: CAT) increased 87 cents or 2.52% to $35.46.

Merck & Co. (NYSE: MRK) surged 81 cents or 3.03% to $27.58.

Energy stocks settled higher. Chevron Corp. (NYSE: CVX) advanced $1.24 or 1.92% to $65.81.Exxon Mobil (NYSE: XOM) increased 12 cents or 0.17% to $69.35.

Among financials, shares of American Express (NYSE: AXP) surged 80 cents or 3.40% to $24.30.Wells Fargo & Co.(NYSE: WFC) gained 73 cents or 2.95% to $25.50.

Early on Friday Tiffany (NYSE: TIF) said that its first-quarter net income plunged 62% to $24.3 million, or 20 cents a share, from $64.4 million, or 50 cents a share, in the year ago quarter. Revenue decreased 22% to $523.1 million. Tiffany rose 24 cents or 0.85% to $28.37.

Late on Thursday, PC maker Dell Inc. (NASDAQ: DELL) announced that net income plunged to $290 million, or 15 cents a share, compared with earnings of $784 million, or 38 cents a share, in the prior year ago quarter. Revenue tumbled 23% to $12.3 billion. Dell rose 9 cents or 0.78% to $11.57.

J. Crew Group Inc. (NYSE: JCG) reported first-quarter net income declined to $20.4 million, or 32 cents a share, from $30.5 million, or 48 cents, in the comparable quarter last year. Revenue increased 1.5% to nearly $346 million from $341 million. Shares of the company soared $5.40 or 26.39% to $25.86.

Consumers product giant Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE: PG) said that it expects 2010 earnings in the range of $3.65 to $3.80 a share, up from the midpoint of its year-ago target of $3.65 a share. Analysts currently expect the company to earn $3.92 a share. P&G expects 2010 organic revenue growth of 1% to 3%.Sharesof the company fel 65 cents or 1.24% to $51.94.

On the downside, shares of troubled automaker General Motors (NYSE: GM) plunged 37 cents or 33.04% to $0.75 as it moves closer to bankruptcy.

R.H. Donnelley Corp., the country's third largest print and online Yellow Pages publisher, announced on Friday that it has filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

European stocks settled with gains. The UK FTSE climbed 30.40 points or 0.69% to 4,417.94. The German DAX and French CAC rose 0.16% and 0.43% respectively.

Asian stocks finished higher. The Nikkei 225 advanced 71.11 points or 0.75% to 9,522.50. The Hang Seng index of Hong Kong increased 285.73 or 1.60% to 18,171.

NYMEX crude oil for July delivery climbed $1.23 or 1.9% to $66.31 a barrel.

Disclosure: Author does not own any of the stocks discussed here.

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