Apr 24, 2014 9:21 AM by Associated Press
NEW YORK (AP) - U.S. stock futures rose sharply 30 minutes before the opening bell as investors cheered strong earnings from Apple and Facebook. Investors also were encouraged by a positive report on orders for long-lasting goods.
KEEPING SCORE: Dow Jones industrial average futures were up 40 points, or 0.2 percent, to 16,500. Standard & Poor's 500 index futures climbed nine points, or 0.5 percent, to 1,882 and technology-heavy Nasdaq futures jumped 60 points, or nearly 2 percent, to 3,615.
APPLE SOARS: Apple rose $44.42, or 8.5 percent, to $569.30 in pre-market trading. The company reported a profit late Wednesday of $10.2 billion, or $11.62 a share, beating forecasts. It also announced it would increase its share buyback program from $60 billion to $90 billion, raise its quarterly dividend, and split its stock seven-for-one.
FACEBOOK JOINS THE PARTY: Facebook was up $3.10, or 5 percent, to $64.46. The social media company reported a profit of 34 cents a share, well ahead of analysts' estimates.
DURABLE GOODS: Orders to U.S. factories for long-lasting manufactured goods rose solidly for a second straight month in March. Orders increased 2.6 percent, following a 2.1 percent rise in February, the Commerce Department said. The back-to-back gains followed two big declines in December and January, which had raised concerns about possible weakness in manufacturing, The earlier declines, however, were likely tied to bad winter weather.
(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)
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