U.S. stocks rose toward records, with the Nasdaq Composite Index at the highest closing level since 2000, as technology shares jumped and Coca-Cola Co. and McDonald’s Corp. rallied after reporting earnings.

Coca-Cola jumped 1.3 percent as it enticed consumers to pay more for its drinks during the quarter. McDonald’s soared 3.1 percent as Chief Executive Officer Steve Easterbrook promised to give details of his turnaround plan next month. Visa Inc. and MasterCard Inc., the world’s biggest payments networks, surged the most since October on prospects for business in China.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index rose 0.5 percent to 2,107.93, less than 10 points from a record, at 4 p.m. in New York. The Nasdaq Composite Index increased 0.4 percent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 88.01 points, or 0.5 percent, to 18,037.60.

While analysts predict an earnings slump through September, they have moderated how steep that will be. They now forecast first-quarter earnings for S&P 500 companies will drop 4.3 percent, better than April 10 estimates for a 5.6 percent decline.

Source : Bloomberg