Stocks gain, boosted by P&G, Starbucks earnings

STEVE ROTHWELL AP Business Writer Published:

NEW YORK (AP) -- Stocks opened higher on Wall Street after Procter & Gamble and Starbucks posted strong earnings reports.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 37 points to 13,863 as of 10:15 a.m. EST. The Standard & Poor's 500 advanced five points to 1,499. The Nasdaq gained 16 points to 3,146.

Procter & Gamble, world's largest consumer products maker, gained $2.52 to $72.97 after reporting that its quarterly income more than doubled. P&G also raised its profit forecast for its full fiscal year. Starbucks rose $2.37 to $56.96 after reporting a 13 percent increase in profits.

The S&P 500 broke through 1,500 Thursday for the first time since December 2007, following a drop in claims for unemployment benefits that added to evidence that the labor market is healing. The index fell back but still ended the day fractionally higher and extended its streak of gains to seven days, the longest since October 2006.

The index has advanced 5.3 percent this month. It jumped at the start of the year when lawmakers reached a last-minute deal to avoid the "fiscal cliff." Stocks built on those gains on optimism that the housing market is recovering and the labor market is healing. The Dow Jones is up 5.9 percent on the year.

Homebuilder stocks didn't react much to a government report that sales of new homes fell in December but posted the first annual gain since 2005. PulteGroup edged up 12 cents to $21.10 and KB Home rose 4 cents to $18.33.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note, which moves inversely to its price, climbed 7 basis points to 1.93 percent.

Among other stocks making big moves.

-- Green Mountain Coffee Roasters rose 91 cents to $44.69 after an analyst noted that sales of a competing coffee brewer introduced by Starbucks were getting off to a weak start.

-- Halliburton gained $1.71 to $39.52 after posting a loss that was smaller than analysts had expected. The oilfield services company said fourth-quarter profits declined 26 percent to $669 million on increasing pricing pressure in the North American market and one-time charges from the Deepwater Horizon disaster. Wall Street had expected worse.

--Hasbro fell $1.56 to $36.90 after the toy maker said its fourth-quarter revenue failed to meet expectations because of poor demand over the holidays. The company plans to cut about 10 percent of its workforce and consolidate facilities to cut expenses.

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