NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stocks posted gains Thursday, aided by strong corporate earnings and good manufacturing data, as investors shrugged off disappointing jobs data. After the close, Google ( GOOG) reported earnings that beat expectations. The Dow Jones Industrial Average added 21 points, or 0.2%, to 11,145. The S&P 500 gained 1 point, or 0.1%, at 1212, while the Nasdaq went ahead by 11 points, or 0.4%, at 2516. After the close of trading, Google said thriving ad sales helped it earn $6.76 per share, excluding items, in the first quarter and boosted revenue by 23%, topping forecasts on both counts. Shares added 1.1% during the session to finish at $595.30, but were selling off in extended hours trading with some reports citing increasing costs as a worry for investors. Also, CEO Eric Schmidt did not participate in the after hours earnings call. The day's economic news offered a mixed view of the recovery. Initial jobless claims unexpectedly rose to 484,000 and industrial production grew at a sluggish pace in March. Regional manufacturing indices, however, showed continued strength.
U.S. foreclosure rates surged 35% in the first quarter, according to RealtyTrac. China's gross domestic product rose 11.9% in the first quarter, while inflation remained low at 2.2%. Overseas, Hong Kong's Hang Seng gained 0.2%, and Japan's Nikkei advanced 0.6%. The FTSE in London was added 0.5% while the DAX in Frankfurt rose 0.2%. London's Heathrow Airport -- Europe's busiest -- closed operations Thursday after a volcano in Iceland forced authorities to close air space in the U.K. and Scandinavia.
Company NewsJoining Google in announcing earnings after the closing bell, Advanced Micro Devices ( AMD) said it bounced back to an adjusted profit of 9 cents a share during the first quarter after posting a loss in the year-earlier period. Analysts expected another loss of 7 cents a share in this latest quarter, according to Briefing.com. News of the number two chipmaker's surprise profit followed Intel's ( INTC)
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