Stocks extended their gains into a second session Wednesday on a rosy outlook for Oracle, better-than-expected earnings from Texas Instruments and a drop in crude oil prices.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 37.03 points, or 0.4 percent, at 10,498.59. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 5.66 points, or 0.5 percent, at 1,174.07. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 26.14 points, or 1.3 percent, at 2,046.09.
Texas Instruments Inc. shares surged 7.3 percent, or $1.54, to $22.66, as the cell phone chipmaker beat Wall Street's expectations despite a dip in fourth-quarter profits compared to the like-period one year ago.
Oracle Corp. gained 3 cents to $13.62 after reiterating its outlook for the current fiscal year and sharply raising its forecast for 2006, citing earnings gains related to its acquisition of PeopleSoft.
The government's report of a build in crude inventories alleviated pricing pressure, and crude futures declined 86 cents to $48.78 on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Locally, Wilshire Bancorp Inc. dropped 1.9 percent to settle at $14.85 after it reported net income of $5.2 million (18 cents per diluted share) for the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, compared with $3.5 million (12 cents) in year-ago period. Analysts had forecast earnings of 19 cents per share, according to IBES.
The L.A.-based company said the profit increase was fueled by strong loan growth and focus on keeping operating expenses down.
After markets closed, SeeBeyond Technology Corp. reported net income of $4 million (4 cents per share) for the fourth quarter ended Dec. 31, versus $759,000 (1 cent) for the year-ago period. The Monrovia-based based maker of business integration software exceeded IBES analysts' estimates of earnings of 1 cent per share.
SeeBeyond shares rose 3.1 percent to close at $3.70 before the earnings announcement.
Also after the close, Cathay General Bancorp reported fourth quarter net income of $21.6 million (42 cents per diluted share) for the period ended Dec. 31, compared with $16.8 million (36 cents) for the like year-ago period. Nelson Information analysts had forecast earnings of 48 cents per share.
Cathay General Bancorp's shares edged up 2.6 percent to $33.92 before the earnings were announced.
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