Stocks End Flat as Earnings Fail to Inspire

U.S. stocks closed flat on Wednesday as the latest round of earnings reports failed to give investors an impetus to push the market’s recent rally forward.  The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 7.22 points, or 0.05%, at 13,986.52. The S&P 500 rose 0.83 point, or 0.05%, to 1,512.12. The Nasdaq Composite fell 3.10 points, or 0.10%, to 3,168.48.

Yelp Inc. (NYSE:YELP) posted a net loss with a strong jump in fourth-quarter revenue on Wednesday. It reported a net loss of $5.3 million, or 8 cents per share, compared to a net loss of $9.1 million, or 56 cents per share, for the same period the previous year. Revenue jumped to $41.2 million from $24.9 million in last year’s fourth quarter.

News Corp (NWSA) reported higher quarterly revenue and profit on Wednesday on strong growth at its cable networks. Its revenue rose 5 percent to $9.43 billion for the quarter that ended in December. Net income was $2.38 billion or $1.01 per share, compared with $1.06 billion or 42 cents per share in the same period a year ago.

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc. (GMCR) said Wednesday that first-quarter net income was $107.6 million, or 70 cents a share, compared with $104.4 million, or 66 cents a share, for the same period a year ago.

Visa Inc. (NYSE:V) on Wednesday reported first-quarter net income of $1.29 billion, or $1.93 a share, compared with $1.03 billion, or $1.49 a share, for the same period a year ago.

A group of GOP lawmakers from House and Senate on Wednesday offered a plan to cut the federal workforce and use the savings to replace some $85 billion in across-the-board budget cuts to the Pentagon and domestic programs.
Italian financial police are carrying out seizures of a total of €40 million ($54 million) as part of an investigation into embattled bank Monte dei Paschi di Sienna. Italian news agencies say Siena prosecutors ordered the seizures Wednesday.

Deutsche Bank has suspended five traders suspected of inappropriate conduct following an internal investigation into possible manipulation of the Europe Interbank Offered Rate (Euribor), a source familiar with the matter said on Wednesday.

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