Wall Street edges up as Intel leads gains in tech

By Angela Moon
June 13, 2014
Traders work on floor of New York Stock Exchange
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange June 10, 2014. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

By Angela Moon

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stocks edged up on Friday, boosted by bullish news from the tech sector, but major indexes remained on track to snap a multi-week string of gains.

Intel Corp was one of the S&P 500's biggest gainers and one of Nasdaq's most active name, but overall gains were capped as investors remained cautious about violence in Iraq, which has taken oil prices to their highest since September.

Analysts are worried about the impact a protracted period of high commodity prices could have on economic growth, especially with indexes near record levels.

President Barack Obama said on Friday he needs several days to determine how the United States will help Iraq deal with a militant insurgency, but he ruled out sending U.S. troops back into combat and said any intervention would be contingent on Iraqi leaders becoming more involved.

Intel shares jumped nearly 7 percent to $29.87 a day after the Dow component raised its full-year revenue outlook, citing stronger-than-expected demand for personal computers used by businesses.

"The market isn't cheap, but it isn't crazy expensive and the sectors that are looking better are cyclical in nature," said Michael Mullaney, chief investment officer at Fiduciary Trust Co in Boston. "Tech has been doing well from a price return standpoint, and that should continue."

OpenTable Inc popped 47 percent to $103.52 in heavy trading after Priceline Group Inc said it would buy the company for $2.6 billion. Priceline fell 1.7 percent to $1,205.42.

Among other Internet names, Yelp Inc jumped 14 percent to $74.99 and GrubHub Inc rose 8.2 percent to $36.41.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 24.12 points or 0.14 percent, to 16,758.31, the S&P 500 gained 4.45 points or 0.23 percent, to 1,934.56 and the Nasdaq Composite added 13.20 points or 0.31 percent, to 4,310.83. For the week, the Dow is down 1 percent, the S&P is down 0.8 percent and the Nasdaq is down 0.2 percent.

The CBOE Volatility index VIX, Wall Street's so-called fear gauge, fell 4.6 percent to 11.98 on Friday but was still up more than 10 percent for the week after Thursday's selloff triggered a spike in the index.

We are "intermediate-term bullish, understanding that the overbought conditions can produce sharp but short-lived pullbacks at any time," said Larry McMillan, president of McMillan Analysis Corp in Morristown, New Jersey, in a note to clients.

The week's decline would be the first after three weeks of consecutive gains on the S&P 500. For the year, the broad market index is up nearly 5 percent.

Brent crude edged further above $113 a barrel on Friday, up about $4 since the start of the week, on concerns that an insurgency in Iraq could trigger civil war and eventually hit oil exports.

In macroeconomic news, U.S. consumer sentiment unexpectedly fell in June as views by consumers with the lowest incomes soured, according to the preliminary June read from the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan's index.

Finisar Corp plunged 23 percent to $19.49 a day after forecasting weaker-than-expected earnings, citing higher capital expenditure in China.

(Reporting by Angela Moon; Editing by Nick Zieminski)