MARKET SNAPSHOT: S&P 500, Nasdaq Jump To Record On Bullish Earnings Even As Alphabet Weighs

By Wallace Witkowski, MarketWatch, Ryan VlastelicaFeaturesDow Jones Newswires

Caterpillar, McDonald's among Dow's biggest gainers of the day

U.S. stocks rose to records Tuesday, following better-than-expected results from bellwether companies, the latest sign that equity valuations may be supported by activity in American corporations.

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The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 140 points, or 0.6%, to 21,653. Some of the market's biggest names reported, including Dow component Caterpillar Inc.(CAT), which rose 5.9% after its earnings surged past expectations ( and it also raised its outlook. McDonald's Corp. (MCD), another Dow component, posted earnings and sales that topped consensus forecasts (, sending shares 5% higher.

The S&P 500 rose 10 points, or 0.4%, to 2,480, hitting an all-time intraday high of 2,481.24, led higher by a 1.5% gain in energy shares and a 1.3% gain in financials.

The Nasdaq Composite Index rose 11 points, or 0.2%, to 6,422, right around their intraday record of 6,422.31, even as shares of Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL) (GOOGL) fell 2.8% after it posted better-than-expected quarterly results ( but also record traffic acquisition costs (

Read more:Alphabet earnings keep Google investors in dark (

Recent gains have been driven by the earnings season, and S&P 500 companies are on track to report earnings growth of 7.2%, along with average revenue growth of 5%. So far, more than 70% of firms that have reported beat earnings or sales expectations, according to FactSet.

"There's been a mixed message but in general companies are coming in a little bit better and sounding better, and essentially central banks are pretty accommodative so the bull play is still pretty much in place and people are adding exposure to equities," said Ian Winer, head of the equities division at Wedbush Securities. Plus, Winer added that a jump in oil prices isn't hurting stocks either.

Oil futures ( gained 3.2% after Saudi Arabia and Nigeria pledged to pull back on exports and limit output.

"By most measures, this is a season where companies are surprising to the upside, and that's a key driver for equity prices," said Terry Sandmen, chief equity strategist at U.S. Bank Wealth Management. "We know valuations are full, but we're cautiously optimistic because earnings are increasing and the Federal Reserve remains accommodative. That's a favorable backdrop for equities."

Individual movers:TechnipFMC(FTI.FR) (FTI.FR) rose less than 0.1%, following an earlier decline, after the provider of oil-field services said it would restate some prior results ( because of material errors.

Biogen(BIIB) rose 0.1%, erasing an earlier gain that came after the biotech giant posted stronger-than-anticipated earnings ( and raised its full-year profit guidance.

Apparel and accessories seller Michael Kors Holdings Ltd.(KORS) fell 0.3% after it agreed to acquire upscale shoemaker Jimmy Choo PLC(CHOO.LN) in a $1.2 billion deal ( Shares of Jimmy Choo surged 17%.

3M Co. (MMM), another in the group of Dow components reporting results on Tuesday, fell 4.4% after its second-quarter revenue missed expectations (

Freeport-McMoRan Inc. (FCX) added 15% after it swung to a second-quarter profit (

General Motors Co.(GM) reported a sharp drop in profits (, a decline related to the sale of its European business and one-time charges linked to the company's exit from some Asian markets. Shares of GM were 0.8% higher.

Don't miss:Here's a sign investors are viewing earnings through rose-tinted glasses (

Economic news: U.S. home-price growth eased slightly but remained healthy ( as demand outweighs supply throughout the housing market. The S&P/Case-Shiller 20-city index rose 5.7% in the three-month period ending in May compared with a year ago, down from 5.8% in the prior period.

A read on consumer confidence came in at 121.1 in July, the second-highest level for the index since 2000.

Check out:MarketWatch's Economic Calendar (

The Federal Reserve's two-day policy meeting is due to kick off Tuesday, with the resulting policy announcement due Wednesday (

"While no change in policy is expected and no press conference is taking place, with the central bank believed to be preparing measures to reduce the balance sheet from September, there may be hints at such a move in the statement," said Craig Erlam, senior market analyst at Oanda, in a note.

Other markets: European stocks rose as a survey showed German business sentiment ( as "euphoric." Asian markets closed mixed. Gold futures ( decline, and a key dollar index was little changed.

--Victor Reklaitis in London contributed to this report

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

July 25, 2017 14:25 ET (18:25 GMT)