Here Are Three Hot Things to Know About Stocks Right Now

  • The S&P 500  ended just 14 points off its all-time high of 2,872.87 set on Jan. 26.
  • Tesla shares surged after CEO Elon Musk tweeted he's considering taking the company private.
  • Twilio Inc. (TWLO) rose 18% after it beat earnings estimates and raised full-year guidance.
  • Zillow Group Inc. (Z) tumbled 15% after quarterly earnings missed estimates and it purchased Mortgage Lenders of America. 

Wall Street Overview

Stocks held onto their gains to close higher on Tuesday, Aug. 7, as earnings continued to impress and the S&P 500 edged closer to the all-time high it reached in January.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average   rose 127 points, or 0.5%, to 25,629, and the S&P 500 gained 0.3%, pushing the index closer to its all-time high of 2,872.87 achieved on Jan. 26. The Nasdaq  rose 0.3%.

With around 71% of the S&P 500 having issued quarterly reports so far this season, earnings are expected to grow by 23.5% over the three months ended in June, a figure that would top the gains recorded over the first quarter and mark the best reporting period in eight years. More than 79% of companies have beaten consensus earnings estimates, according to Thomson Reuters data, well ahead of the 72% average for the past four quarters.

Tesla (TSLA) shares surged after CEO Elon Musk tweeted he was considering takeing the company private at $420 a share. The stock ended up 11% at $379.56 after trading resumed late in the session.

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Carl Icahn launched a campaign on Tuesday to block Cigna Corp.'s (CI) planned $67 billion acquisition of Express Scripts Holdings Co. (ESRX) , the largest pharmacy benefits management group in the U.S., calling the purchase price "ridiculous" in the face of competition from Amazon.com Inc.  (AMZN) and other "existential risks."

Cigna rose 0.2%, and Express Scripts shares were up 2.8%. Cigna shredded Icahn in a letter to shareholders after the close. 

Dean Foods Co. (DF) fell 15% after the company cut its profit outlook for the full year. The company's earnings and sales in the second quarter beat analysts' forecasts.

Bausch Health Cos. (BHC) , formerly Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc., posted a second-quarter loss of $873 million, or $2.49 a share, wider than a year-earlier loss of 11 cents. Revenue of $2.13 billion beat Wall Street estimates. The stock rose 4.5% on Tuesday.

Emerson Electric Co. (EMR)  posted fiscal third-quarter adjusted earnings of 88 cents a share, beating estimates by 2 cents. Shares rose 4%.

Emerson Electric is a holding in Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS member club. Want to be alerted before Jim Cramer buys or sells the stock? Learn more now.

Earnings reports are also expected Tuesday from Walt Disney Co. (DIS) , Fossil Group Inc. (FOSL) ,  Papa John's International Inc. (PZZA) , Wendy's Co. (WEN) and Snap Inc. (SNAP) .

Twilio Inc. (TWLO)  beat analysts' estimates on both the top and bottom lines during the second quarter and raised its full-year guidance. Shares jumped 18%.

TheStreet's sister publication RealMoney explored Twilio as part of its "Stock of the Day" coverage. 

Zillow Group Inc. (Z) tumbled 15% after second-quarter earnings came in lower than expected, and it announced an acquisition of Mortgage Lenders of America for an undisclosed price.

Weight Watchers International Inc. ( WTW) fell 15% on Tuesday despite a 28% year-over-year increase in subscribers at the weight-loss company during the second quarter and a 20% jump in revenue to $410 million.

The 4.5 million subscribers in the second quarter was, however, a decline from 4.6 million subscribers in the first quarter. TheStreet talked with Weight Watchers CEO Mindy Grossman about the quarter