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US STOCKS-Wall St climbs after strong data, before Alcoa reports
July 8, 2013 / 1:57 PM / 4 years ago

US STOCKS-Wall St climbs after strong data, before Alcoa reports

* Alcoa rises before reporting earnings after market’s close

* Proxy firm recommends Michael Dell’s buyout offer

* Goldman Sachs sees year-end S&P rising to 1,750

* Indexes up: Dow 0.49 pct, S&P 500 0.46 pct, Nasdaq 0.41 pct

By Chuck Mikolajczak

NEW YORK, July 8 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose on Monday, putting the S&P 500 on pace for its third straight advance after a robust June payrolls report and before the start of quarterly earnings reports after the market’s close.

The benchmark S&P index rose 1 percent on Friday after government data showed the economy created more jobs than expected, pointing to growth. But many traders were away, extending Thursday’s Independence Day holiday. Volume was light and trading volatile.

“Today we will get a better read, but we do have (Friday’s gains) to work with, so we are already in the green on that data,” said Peter Kenny, chief market strategist at Knight Capital in Jersey City, New Jersey.

“Any shift lower from here would not necessarily be a vote of no confidence or a vote of caution for the market.”

Dow component Alcoa Inc, the largest U.S. aluminum producer, unofficially kicks off the earnings season after the market’s close. The company is expected to report earnings of 6 cents per share on revenue of $5.83 billion. Alcoa shares edged up 0.4 percent to $7.84.

Goldman Sachs analyst Davis Kostin said in a note to clients that rising earnings, coupled with stable margins, should lift the S&P 500 by 8 percent to Goldman’s year-end target of 1,750. The index ended at 1,632 on Friday.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 74.89 points, or 0.49 percent, to 15,210.73. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index gained 7.52 points, or 0.46 percent, to 1,639.41. The Nasdaq Composite Index gained 14.35 points, or 0.41 percent, to 3,493.73.

Analysts’ expectations call for S&P 500 earnings growth to rise 2.9 percent in the second quarter from a year ago, while quarterly revenue is forecast to increase 1.6 percent from a year ago, according to Thomson Reuters data.

“This earnings season the big question, more than it has been in four years, is going to be top line and revenue growth - not financial engineering, not cost savings, not cost cutting. Where is the organic growth that leads to not just stabilization but a sense there is a demand component to this?” said Kenny.

Later in the week, earnings are expected from JPMorgan Chase & Co and Wells Fargo & Co.

Dell Inc climbed 2.2 percent to $13.31 after investment advisory firm ISS recommended shareholders vote for Chief Executive Michael Dell’s $24.4 billion offer for the PC maker. The S&P technology sector rose 0.3 percent.

Cytokinetics Inc shares slumped 6.6 percent to $11.97 after the company disclosed a study programming error in its amyotrophic lateral sceloris treatment, Tirasemtiv.

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