Stocks Rise on Earnings, Jobless Claims Data

U.S. stocks rose in the early trading on Thursday, boosted by strong third-quarter earnings from Caterpillar Inc. and other companies and the report that showed U.S. jobless claims data point to firming labor market. The Dow Jones industrial average lately rose 192.25 points, or 1.17%, to 16,653.57. The S&P 500 gained 17.78 points, or 0.92%, to 1,944.89. The Nasdaq Composite added 43.48 points, or 0.99%, to 4,426.33.

The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits rose last week, but the underlying trend firmly pointed to strengthening labor market conditions. Initial claims for state unemployment benefits increased 17,000 to a seasonally adjusted 283,000 for the week ended Oct. 18, the Labor Department said on Thursday.

Caterpillar Inc reported a stronger-than-expected quarterly profit and boosted its 2014 profit outlook, citing strong demand for its products in North America. Excluding restructuring costs, Caterpillar said it now expects to earn $6.50 a share in 2014, against an original estimate of $5.85.

Athletic-apparel maker Under Armour Inc. said its apparel and footwear sales shot up 29% in the latest quarter, helping drive a surge in revenue. The company again raised its outlook for sales for the year and now expects revenue of $3.03 billion, compared with its prior forecast of $2.98 billion to $3 billion.

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