FOX Business: Capitalism Lives Here

U.S. equity markets pushed higher on Tuesday as traders eyed strong earnings from Merck and easing tension in Eastern Europe. 

Today's Markets

As of 11:24 a.m. ET, the Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 69.4 points, or 0.42%, to 16517, the S&P 500 advanced 6.1 points, or 0.33%, to 1876 and the Nasdaq Composite rose 13.9 points, or 0.34%, to 4089.

Monday was a tumultuous trading session: The markets shot between gains and losses as traders paid close attention to developments in Ukraine. Ultimately, the Dow and S&P 500 ended to the upside. 

Analysts cited easing tension in Eastern Europe as a reason for the early gains seen on Wall Street and foreign markets. Better-than-expected profits from pharmaceutical giant Merck (MRK) helped the blue-chip stock climb. 

Earnings from eBay (EBAY) and Twitter (TWTR) are due out after the closing bell in New York. 

On the economic front, the Federal Reserve kicks off its two-day meeting. The policy statement is due out on Wednesday. 

Home prices in 20 major U.S. cities were unchanged in February from January on a non-seasonally adjusted basis, as forecast, according to the closely-watched S&P/Case-Shiller gauge. Prices jumped 12.9% from the year prior, shallower than the 13% increase Wall Street anticipated.

A separate report from the Conference Board showed consumer confidence for the month of April fell to 82.3, from a revised March reading of 83.9. The reading missed Wall Street expectations of 83.

Elsewhere, U.S. crude oil futures climbed 57 cents, or 0.57%, to $101.40 a barrel. Wholesale New York Harbor gasoline rose 0.31% to $3.05 a gallon. Gold dropped $8.90, or 0.69%, to $1,290 a troy ounce. 

Follow Adam Samson on Twitter @adamsamson.