Updated from 10:23 a.m. ET, Wednesday, Aug. 16. 

Stocks were higher on Wednesday, Aug. 16, as Target Corp. (TGT) and Urban Outfitters Inc. (URBN) sweetened investor appetite for retail names. 

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.35%, the S&P 500 gained 0.32% and the Nasdaq added 0.4%.

Target added 3% on better-than-expected earnings and a sunny outlook. Net income rose to $1.22 a share over its quarter ended July 29, higher than $1.16 a share a year earlier. Adjusted earnings of $1.23 a share beat estimates by 4 cents.

Revenue increased 1.6% to $16.4 billion, edging out consensus by $130 million. Same-store sales gained 1.3%, smashing targets of 0.3% growth. 

"We are pleased that second-quarter traffic increased more than 2%, reflecting growth in both our store and digital channels," Brian Cornell, chairman and CEO of Target, said in a statement. "We continue to focus on our long-term strategy, as we work to transform every part of our business and build an even better Target that will thrive in this new era in retail."

Target also raised its full-year adjusted earnings guidance to $4.34 to $4.54 a share, higher than a previous range of $3.80 to $4.20. 

Urban Outfitters rocketed 20% higher Wednesday after topping quarterly estimates thanks to strength in its direct-to-consumer sales. Profit of 44 cents a share compared with analysts' estimates of 37 cents a share.

Revenue dipped 2% to $873 million, though it came in higher than $862 million consensus.

Comparable retail segment revenue fell 4.9%, while wholesale net sales increased 10%. By brand, revenue at Free People gained 2.9%, but fell 4% at Anthropologie and 7.9% at Urban Outfitters.

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