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Stocks Rise After Debt-Ceiling Deal


NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Major U.S. stock averages advanced Wednesday, helped by upbeat earnings from high-profile companies and a debt-ceiling deal.

Apple (AAPL) shares jumped 1.8% to $514 ahead of the company's fourth-quarter earnings report. After the stock market closed, the tech giant said profit was $13.81 a share, beating analysts' estimates of $13.53 a share, while revenue was $54.5 billion, trailing estimates of $54.9 billion. The shares subsequently tumbled, trading as low as $485.

United Technologies (UTX) edged up 0.7% after the industrial giant's earnings Wednesday. Google (GOOG) shares jumped 5.5% and IBM (IBM) shares popped 4.4% after their fourth-quarter reports Tuesday evening.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 67 points, or 0.5%, to 13,779. The blue-chip index climbed for the ninth session out of 10, a streak last seen in February 2011.

Breadth was negative, with losers outnumbering winners 17 to 12. Coca-Cola (KO) finished unchanged. Hewlett-Packard (HPQ), Merck (MRK), Cisco (CSCO) and Caterpillar (CAT) shares were declining the most.

McDonald's (MCD) shares were up 0.6% after the company posted fourth-quarter earnings of $1.38 a share on revenue of $6.95 billion, topping the Wall Street consensus estimate of $1.33 a share on revenue of $6.89 billion as the company focused on offering affordable menu options. For the near-term, the restaurant chain expects revenue and profit growth to remain pressured, with January's global comparable sales expected to be negative.

The top percentage blue-chip winners were IBM, Microsoft (MSFT) and Walt Disney (DIS).

IBM topped Wall Street's fourth-quarter earnings estimates, boosted by strength in its software business.

United Technologies posted fourth-quarter earnings Wednesday of $1.04 a share on revenue of $16.4 billion, versus the average analyst expectation of earnings of $1.03 a share on revenue of $16.63 billion. The company reaffirmed its 2013 earnings per share outlook of $5.85 to $6.15 a share, saying that it was seeing improvements in order trends.

Microsoft shares rose 1.7%. Reports said Tuesday that Microsoft could invest as much as $3 billion in an eventual takeover of struggling PC maker Dell (DELL). Dell shares were down 0.3% after jumping Tuesday on the reports.

The S&P 500 added 2 points, or 0.2%, to 1,495. The Nasdaq was higher by 10 points, or 0.3%, to 3,154.

In the broad market, sectors were mixed, led lower by consumer cyclicals, utilities and basic materials. The technology, services and consumer non-cyclicals climbed.

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