There's been very little that investors could be certain about so far this year, except for this: Tuesday's are usually winners. While the market has bounced back and forth, the S&P 500 has posted gains on 14 of the 16 Tuesdays this year. The index is up about 9 percent on Tuesdays, and down about 9 percent on all of the other days.
This Tuesday was no exception: The Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) rose 86 points, the Standard & Poor's 500 index (^GPSC) added 9, and the Nasdaq composite (^IXIC) gained 29 points.
The focus today was on earnings, but that could switch on Wednesday to the economy, when the Federal Reserve wraps up its two-day policy meeting and we get a look a first-quarter GDP.
Let's start with the earnings winners:
Merck (MRK) gained 3½ percent as it beat expectations. It's been one of the Dow's best performing stocks over the past six months, up 28 percent.
BP (BP) rose 2½ percent even though its net fell, but it did boost its dividend. Sprint (S) jumped 11 percent. Its loss narrowed from a year ago.
Buffalo Wild Wings (BWLD) poured on the hot sauce, gaining 5 percent, after raising its outlook. Chipotle Mexican Grill (CMG) rose 3 percent as it plans to raise menu prices. And Twitter (TWTR) rose 4½ percent ahead of its results.
Of course, there were some earnings disappointments too.
Goodyear Tire (GT) fell 7½ percent after coming in short of expectations. Coach (COH) tumbled 9 percent after the maker of bags and accessories posted weak sales. And the 3D printing firm 3D Systems (DDD) fell 9 percent on disappointing earnings guidance for the year.
Elsewhere, GoGo (GOGO) went – straight down. The provider of in-flight internet service tumbled 28 percent on word that AT&T will enter the business next year. GoGo shares have lost more than a third of their value in past three months.
But the biotech firm Amicus Therapeutics (FOLD) jumped 21 percent on positive test results for its treatment of a disease that allows fat to build up in human cells.
Internet and social network stocks rebounded. Facebook (FB) gained 3½ percent and Google (GOOG) added 2 percent.
What to Watch Wednesday:
- Payroll processor ADP releases its survey of private-sector hiring for April.
- The Commerce Department reports first-quarter gross domestic product, and the Labor Department releases its first-quarter employment cost index, both at 8:30 a.m. Eastern time.
- Federal Reserve policymakers conclude their two-day meeting to set interest rates at 2 p.m.
- ADP (ADP)
- Boston Beer Co. (SAM)
- Carlyle Group (CG)
- GlaxoSmithKline (GSK)
- Time Warner (TWX)
- WellPoint (WLP)
- Southern Co. (SO)
- Weight Watchers International (WTW)
- Williams Cos. (WMB)
- Yelp (YELP)