Stocks Opened Up after Housing Data

U.S. stocks advanced modestly at the open on Wednesday, helped by encouraging housing data and
ahead of a Federal Reserve decision on whether to taper stimulus measures. The Dow Jones
Industrial Average lately gained 51.18 points, or 0.32%, to 15,926.44. The S&P 500 was up 3.63
points, or 0.20%, to 1,784.63. The Nasdaq Composite moved up 3.68 points, or 0.09%, to 4,027.36.

Construction on new U.S. homes soared in November to hit the fastest pace since early 2008.Housing
starts leaped 22.7% in November to reach a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.09 million, with
surges for single-family homes and apartments, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Ford Motor Co. said its pretax earnings for 2013 would be $8.5 billion, and 2014 profit would be
between $7 billion and $8 billion. Ford’s pretax margin in North America for the year will be
between 9.5% and 10%, lower than expected.

FedEx Corp. (FDX) said Wednesday its fiscal second-quarter profit rose to $500 million, or $1.57 a
share, from $438 million, or $1.39 a share, a year earlier. Quarterly revenue rose 3% to $11.4
billion.

Wireless service provider Sprint Corp and satellite television company Dish Network Corp said they
will jointly develop a trial wireless service in Texas, in an apparent sign of improving relations
between the companies.

BP PLC said Wednesday it would write off more than $1 billion in costs related to an unsuccessful
Brazilian well, but also said it made a large oil discovery in the deep water Gulf of Mexico.

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