Stocks Opened Higher After Economic Data

U.S. stocks opened slightly higher on Tuesday, as investors digested a slew of earnings reports as well as economic data. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately jumped 61.95 points, or 0.37%, to 16,879.89. The S&P 500 was up 9.13 points, or 0.47%, to 1,970.76. The Nasdaq Composite gained 37.06 points, or 0.83%, to 4,523.00.

Orders for U.S. durable goods fell in September for the second month in a row as demand waned for a variety of products including autos, aircraft, computers and heavy machinery. Durable-goods orders declined by a seasonally adjusted 1.3% last month, the Commerce Department said Tuesday.

Home prices in 20 U.S. cities rose at a weaker pace in the year ended in August as borrowing standards remain tight and wage gains fail to accelerate. The S&P/Case-Shiller index of property values increased 5.6 percent from August 2013.

Pfizer Inc. (PFE:US), the biggest U.S. drugmaker, beat analysts’ estimates after sales of top vaccine and pain products grew and the company continued to buy back billions of dollars in stock. Third-quarter net income (PFE:US) rose 3 percent to $2.67 billion, or 42 cents a share, from $2.59 billion, or 39 cents, a year earlier.

Twitter announced September quarter financial results that were better than Street expectations but its user and usage metrics have slowed enough to negatively impact its valuation multiples and therefore its stock price. Twitter’s advertising revenue of $320 million grew 114% year over year and should grow about 85% year over year in the December quarter.

Aetna Inc. again raised its earnings outlook for the year as its government business drove growth in membership and posted lower costs. Its third-quarter results, topped analysts’ expectations. The company reported a profit of $594.5 million, or $1.67 a share, up from $518.6 million, or $1.38 a share, in the prior-year period.

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