U.S. shares gain despite IBM hit, build on Japan stocks surge

Mon Oct 20, 2014 5:27pm EDT
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By Sam Forgione

NEW YORK (Reuters) - A measure of global equity markets rose on Monday after strong U.S. corporate results lifted Wall Street, despite a quarterly earnings miss from IBM, building on positive sentiment that grew out of a surge in Japanese shares.

On Wall Street, IBM (IBM.N: Quote) shares closed down 7.1 percent at $169.10. While IBM's miss limited the Dow's gains, the index turned modestly higher before the end of the U.S. session, while the S&P 500 and Nasdaq advanced.

"The fact that the Dow has been able to get positive with IBM's 13-point decline is pretty significant. It shows the overall strength in the market," said Philip Orlando, chief equity market strategist at Federated Investors in New York. "We're continuing to rebound off of oversold levels," he said.

U.S. corporate earnings season will ramp up this week, with nearly 130 S&P 500 companies scheduled to report. Apple Inc (AAPL.O: Quote) posted a better-than-expected 12 percent jump in revenue after Monday's close . Shares in Apple were roughly flat at about $100 in after-hours trade.

European stocks closed lower, meanwhile, after a profit warning from German business software maker SAP (SAPG.DE: Quote) hit technology shares.

"It's all about growth at the moment. Cyclicals have been underperforming in recent months ... (and) with respect to SAP, it's a result of the business investment climate," said Mike Ingram, market strategist at BGC Partners.

Japan's Nikkei average .N225 surged 4 percent, underpinned by news that Japan's $1.2 trillion public pension would likely more than double its allocation to domestic stocks to about 25 percent. The Nikkei's gain on Monday marked its biggest daily rise since June 2013.

MSCI's all-country world index .MIWD00000PUS, which tracks shares in 45 nations, was last up 0.74 percent to 399.94, while the FTSEurofirst 300 index .FTEU3 of top European shares closed down 0.58 percent at 1,272.72.   Continued...

Traders are pictured at their desks in front of the DAX board at the Frankfurt stock exchange October 20, 2014.     REUTERS/Remote/Stringer