Stocks on Tuesday recouped a big chunk of their losses from Monday, thanks to solid earnings reports from two leading banks, and big moves by some technology leaders. JPMorgan Chase (JPM) edged higher and Wells Fargo's (WFC) share price was little changed -- but their slightly better-than-expected quarterly numbers set a positive tone. And a government report showing a solid retail sales gain in December also helped.
The Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) rose 116 points, snapping a four day losing streak. The Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) gained 19 points, and the Nasdaq composite (^IXIC)
rallied 69, closing at its highest level in 13 years, led by some of the biggest names in tech.
Intel (INTC) jumped 4 percent after a JPMorgan upgrade to "overweight." Microsoft (MSFT) gained more than 2 percent. %VIRTUAL-article-sponsoredlinks%Google (GOOG) rose 2.5 percent after it agreed to buy startup Nest, which makes smart home thermostats and fire detectors controlled through the Internet, for $3.2 billion.
Also helping the Nasdaq, a 15 percent jump by Tesla (TSLA), which posted better-than-expected sales in the fourth quarter. It also issued a battery "Fix," which it insisted was not a recall. Telsa shares are up 384 percent over the past 365 days.
Biotech rebounded from some recent weakness. Regeneron (REGN) jumped 12 percent. It's developing a new treatment for macular degeneration with Bayer. Biogen (BIIB) gained 5 percent.
Elsewhere, Time Warner Cable (TWC) rose nearly 3 percent to well above the takeover price offered by Charter Communications (CHTR). Time Warner rejected the bid, so investors obviously expect Charter or someone else to come in with a higher offer. Charter gained more than 2 percent.
Pfizer (PFE) rose 1.5 percent as bidders line up to buy all or parts of its generic drug business. Three firms are being mentioned as potential bidders: U.K.-based GW Pharma (GWP), which rose 2.5 percent, Vivus (VVUS), which gained 4.5 percent, and Valeant (VRX), which rose 3 percent.
Intercept Pharmaceuticals (ICPT) was a big mover for the fourth day in a row. It lost 29 percent on the day, but it's still up 260 percent over the past week.
And the retailer GameStop (GME) tumbled 20 percent. It released disappointing results for the holiday period, and issued a weak outlook.
What to Watch Wednesday:
The Labor Department releases the Producer Price Index for December at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time. The Federal Reserve releases its Beige Book survey of regional economic conditions at 2 p.m.
These major companies are due to release quarterly financial statements:
-Produced by Drew Trachtenberg.