U.S. stocks up on earnings, waning Portugal fears; Dow rises 0.17%


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Investing.com - U.S. stocks rose on Friday on upbeat earnings from Wells Fargo, while hopes Portugal's financial system remains sound also boosted stock prices.

At the close of U.S. trading, the Dow 30 rose 0.17%, the S&P 500 index rose 0.15%, while the NASDAQ Composite index rose 0.44%.

The Volatility S&P 500 index, which measures the outlook for market volatility, was down 3.97% at 12.09.

U.S. financial institution Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE:WFC) reported earlier that profits rose by 3% to $5.42 billion in the second quarter thanks to an improving housing sector and fewer bad loans, which drew applause on Wall Street, though caution remained as the bank's revenue slipped albeit less than markets were expecting.

Earnings season will gain steam next week, and hopes for more pleasant surprises sent stocks gaining on Friday as did ebbing European financial concerns.

The parent company of Portugal's largest bank, Banco Espirito Santo (LISBON:BES), said it missed some payments on commercial paper, which spooked markets by fueling concerns surrounding the soundness of the banking sectors in Portugal as well as in Spain and Italy.

By Friday, investors crept out of safe-harbor dollar positions and returned to both European and U.S. equities after Banco Espírito Santo sought to reassure markets that it had the funds to cover its parent company.

Portuguese government and central bank authorities sought to soothe global markets as well by assuring to the soundness of the country's financial system.

Meanwhile in the U.S., solid jobless claims numbers released on Thursday boosted spirits on Friday.

The U.S. Department of Labor reported earlier that the number of individuals filing for initial jobless benefits in the week ending July 5 declined by 11,000 to 304,000. Analysts had expected jobless claims to hold steady at 315,000 last week.

Leading Dow Jones Industrial Average performers included Verizon Communications Inc (NYSE:VZ), up 1.38%, General Electric Company (NYSE:GE), up 1.32%, and Boeing Company (NYSE:BA), up 1.02%.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average's worst performers included Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX), down 1.37%, Exxon Mobil Corporation (NYSE:XOM), down 0.81%, and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), down 0.68%.

European indices, meanwhile, ended the day higher.

After the close of European trade, the DJ Euro Stoxx 50 rose 0.12%, France's CAC 40 rose 0.35%, while Germany's DAX rose 0.07%. Meanwhile, in the U.K. the FTSE 100 rose 0.27%.

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This article appears in: Investing , Forex and Currencies

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