Jump in housing starts, earnings send stocks up

NEW YORK (AP) — A new sign of recovery in the housing market and strong corporate earnings sent stocks higher for a second day.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 103.16 points, or 0.8 percent, to 12,908.70 on Wednesday, a strong showing for what has been a mediocre July so far. The index has risen only four times in the last 12 trading days.

A big gain by Intel after it posted a strong earnings report drove up technology stocks, especially other chip makers. Those companies, plus industrials, were responsible for much of the market’s gains. The Nasdaq composite climbed 32.56 points, or 1.1 percent, to 2,942.60.

The government reported that builders broke ground last month on the most new homes and apartments in nearly four years. The 6.9 percent jump brought the number of housing starts to the highest since October 2008. The news came a day after a gauge of confidence among U.S. homebuilders jumped to the highest level in five years.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 9.11 points, or 0.7 percent, to 1,372.78. Amphenol jumped nearly 15 percent, the most in the index, after the maker of electronic cables and connectors reported second-quarter earnings that were higher than analysts were expecting. Its stock rose $7.58 to $58.94.

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