Investors jumped on a wave of strong corporate financial results Friday, propelling stocks higher for the third time in five days.
The gains wiped out much of the market’s losses from the day before, when the downing of a Malaysia Airlines passenger jet in eastern Ukraine stirred concerns that tensions between Russia and the West could escalate. Israel’s launch of a ground offensive into Gaza also stoked geopolitical uncertainty.
Those worries appeared to ease Friday, as world leaders called for an immediate cease-fire in the region, and international attention turned toward the task of determining what led to the aircraft being shot down. Investors turned their attention to the latest encouraging company earnings.
“Typically when these events hit the news, it’s kind of a sell-now, ask-questions-later moment, and then there is a reassessment, and that’s exactly what we had,” said Quincy Krosby, market strategist at Prudential Financial. “Today, the market focused again on earnings, which for the most part were good, surprising to the upside, and the markets just basically got back to their normal business.”
Honeywell International gained $1.65, or 1.7 percent, to $96.82 after reporting that its income rose sharply in the latest quarter and beat investors’ forecasts.
Furniture and accessories company Knoll and semiconductor Skyworks Solutions also got a lift from quarterly results that exceeded Wall Street’s expectations. Knoll jumped $1.18, or 7 percent, to $18.15, while Skyworks rose $6.53, or 14.1 percent, to $52.87.
Banks have mostly reported strong second-quarter results, including Citigroup and Goldman Sachs earlier this week. Huntington Bancshares was no exception, reporting stronger earnings and net interest income. Its shares added 45 cents, or 4.8 percent, to $9.75.
The second-quarter earnings season enters its busiest period next week, when the market will get financial results from companies including McDonald’s, Apple, Boeing and AT&T.
Advanced Micro Devices sank after the chipmaker issued a revenue outlook for the current quarter that fell short of Wall Street’s expectations. The company reported a narrower loss in its second quarter late Thursday. The stock fell 74 cents, or 16.2 percent, to $3.83.