Stock Market Story: Stocks Gain as Nasdaq Trades Near Best Levels of the Day

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- In the absence of any deeply worrying economic news, and with some decent global data and a breather from geopolitical jitters, stocks were trading higher midday Wednesday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DIA) turning positive for the year and the Nasdaq (QQQ) staying near its best levels of the day.

The S&P 500 (SPY) was rising 0.55% to 1,944.32. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was advancing 0.38% to 16,623.77. The Nasdaq was up 0.84% to 4,425.88 bolstered by tech heavyweights Amazon (AMZN), Google (GOOG), Apple (AAPL), Microsoft (MSFT) as they rose between 0.8% and 3.5%. Chip stocks were also lending support.

As of Wednesday, technical indicators were suggesting that the S&P 500 will likely stay rangebound between the levels of 1,910 to 1,950 for the remainder of the summer, according to Rockwell Global Capital's chief market economist Peter Cardillo.

Overseas, China reported high-single-digit industrial output growth overnight and the Bank of England raised its 2014 GDP forecast. Japan's second-quarter GDP crashed but due to a widely expected sales tax hike. Eurozone industrial output fell 0.3% in June, but the two largest economies -- Germany and France -- both recorded a sequential rise.

U.S. retail sales came in lower than the consensus, unchanged in July and up 0.1% excluding autos, the Census Bureau said. But economists are expecting an upward revision in the next report in light of higher U.S. job openings, fewer layoffs, rising consumer confidence and increasing wealth. The government also reported an as-forecast 0.4% increase in June business inventories.

In individual stock news, King Digital (KING) shares were plummeting 23.19% to $13.98 after the maker of the addictive Candy Crush video game reported weaker second-quarter revenue than analysts expected. Amazon was popping 3.44% to $330.31 after saying it will operate a mobile payments system to compete with Square and other payments systems. Tesla Motors (TSLA) rose to a 52-week high of $265.35 on Wednesday after the electric car maker opened two new Supercharger stations in the U.K.

 

--By Andrea Tse in New York

Follow @AndreaTTse

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