Earnings gains at US companies send stocks higher on Wall Street; Ford raises profit forecast

10/24/2013
ASSOCIATED PRESS
Wall-Street-Premarket-193

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013. World markets were mostly higher Thursday,Oct. 24, 2013 buoyed by an improvement in China's manufacturing, but Chinese shares fell amid jitters over tighter credit in the world's second largest economy. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

ASSOCIATED PRESS

NEW YORK — Stocks are closing higher after earnings gains at major U.S. companies including Ford and Southwest Airlines.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 95 points, or 0.6 percent, to close at 15,509 today.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index increased five points, or 0.3 percent, at 1,752, just two points below the record high it closed at on Tuesday.

The Nasdaq composite rose 21 points, or 0.6 percent, to 3,929.

Ford rose 24 cents, or 1 percent, to $17.76 after posting record earnings and raising its full-year profit forecast.

Southwest rose 61 cents, or 4 percent, to $17.02. Average fares were higher and fuel costs fell.

Three stocks rose for every two that fell on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume was heavier than usual at 3.6 billion shares.