U.S. stocks rallied, heading toward their first gain in three days after a batch of better-than-estimated earnings from companies including McDonald’s Corp. and EBay Inc. boosted optimism on the health of corporate America.
Equities got a further lift from prospects Europe will move to bolster its economy. European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said today policy makers will investigate fresh stimulus measures to thwart downside risks to the growth and inflation outlooks.
McDonald’s jumped the most in seven years and EBay headed for its biggest gain since 2012. Dow Chemical Co. advanced 5 percent after its earnings topped forecasts, and Texas Instruments added 10 percent after better-than-estimated results. American Express Co. lost 5.5 percent after results missed analysts’ forecasts. Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc. fell another 14 percent after tumbling 19 percent yesterday.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index rose 1.7 percent to 2,052.22 at 12:35 p.m. in New York, rallying above its average price during the past 100 days. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 300.34 points, or 1.8 percent, to 17,468.95, while the Nasdaq Composite Index climbed 1.7 percent.