Dow Leaps on Earnings and IPOs

Stocks closed higher on Thursday as Wall Street digested more corporate earnings reports, solid retail data and two highly anticipated initial public offerings.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 110 points to 26,559.54, as shares of Travelers advanced.

The S&P 500 gained 4.58 points to 2,905.03, led by industrials

The NASDAQ Composite eked up 1.98 points to 7,990.31

The Dow rose 0.6%, and the NASDAQ improved 0.2% for the week, while the S&P 500 slipped 0.1%.

Honeywell rose more than 3% on better-than-expected earnings while United Rentals surged 8.2% on its quarterly numbers. Dow member Travelers Cos gained 2.3% on its earnings report while Snap-on jumped 6.5%.

Investors also got a boost after Pinterest and Zoom Video Communications had successful initial public offerings. Zoom skyrocketed 72.2% while Pinterest shot up 28.4%.

So far, more than 78% of the S&P 500 companies that have reported have topped analyst expectations

'The health-care sector fell more than 4% this week as investors worry over proposals pushed by Democratic lawmakers. UnitedHealth CEO David Wichmann told analysts in a conference call earlier this week that propositions like “Medicare for All” would “jeopardize the relationship people have with their doctors, destabilize the nation’s health system and limit the ability of clinicians to practice medicine at their best.”

Shares of Regeneron Pharmaceuticals and HCA Healthcare led the decline in the sector this week, falling 13% and 9.9%, respectively. The decline within the sector has been broad based, however. Nearly 80% of health-care stocks were below their 50-day moving averages, according to Bespoke Investment Group. By comparison, 90% of tech stocks were above their 50-day averages.

Retail sales in the U.S. rose by 1.6% last month, the strongest gain since September 2017. Economists expected a gain of 0.9%.

Prices for the benchmark 10-year U.S. Treasury were higher, thus lowering yields to 2.56% from Wednesday’s 2.59%. Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions.

Oil prices regained 29 cents to $64.05 U.S. a barrel.

Gold prices nosed ahead 50 cents to $1,277.30 U.S. an ounce.