US stocks edge higher on Greece hopes (Lead)

February 9th, 2012 - 8:05 am ICT by IANS  

New York, Feb 9 (IANS) US stocks edged higher Wednesday as investors were still hoping the debt talks in Greece will be resolved, Xinhua reported.

Despite the hopes, some investors were concerned that as the talks dragged on, a disorderly Greece debt default would drag the region deeper into recession and dampen the US recovery.

On earnings front, Groupon posted its first results as a public company, saying that its fourth-quarter net loss attributable to common stockholders was $42.7 million, or 0.08 dollar per share.

Cisco Systems, the computer networking giant, posted Wednesday its fiscal second-quarter earnings. The company achieved earnings with $0.47 a share and its net income hit $2.2 billion, beating analysts’ expectations.

Walt Disney released quarterly revenue which fell short of expectations, but its profit grew faster than expected as its TV networks and theme parks held strong despite the weak economy.

As for shares, technology sector jumped as investors believed technology companies will embrace a great profit surge this year. Healthcare and transportation shares were among the laggards.

The Dow Jones industrial average added 5.75 points, or 0.04 percent, at 12,883.95. The Standard & Poor’s 500 gained 2.91 points, or 0.22 percent, to 1,349.96. The Nasdaq Composite Index rose 11.78 points, or 0.41 percent, to 2,915.86.

As for other markets, the US dollar traded mixed against major currencies in late New York trading on Wednesday as investors still waited for the results of Greek debt talks. The dollar index edged up 0.01 percent to 78.58.

Crude prices rose Wednesday as another round of optimism on Greece debt deal lifted sentiment and tension between Iran and the West fueled supplies concerns.

Light, sweet crude for March delivery gained 30 cents, or 0.30 percent to settle at $98.71 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. In London, Brent crude rose 97 cents, or 0.83 percent to close at $117.20 a barrel.

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