US STOCKS-Wall St up on tech results, on track for weekly rise

Reuters

* Amazon and Microsoft rally after results, lifting Nasdaq

* UPS sees boost in holiday volume, shares hit record high

* Major indexes on track to end week higher

* Indexes up: Dow 0.1 pct, S&P 0.2 pct, Nasdaq 0.2 pct

By Ryan Vlastelica

NEW YORK, Oct 25 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks edged up on Friday,with technology shares leading the gains on strong results,though the market's rally appeared to be running out of steamwith indexes near all-time highs.

The S&P 500 has gained 23 percent so far this year, just shyof the 23.5 percent jump it posted in 2009. Surpassing the 2009record would give the index its biggest annual gain in a decade.The benchmark is also on track for its third-straight week ofgains.

Microsoft Corp was the leading point gainer on theDow, Nasdaq and S&P 500 as profit and revenue reported lateThursday exceeded expectations, sending shares up 5.9 percent to$35.72. Amazon.com posted its largest daily gain sinceApril 2012 after the online retailer reportedstronger-than-expected sales growth. Shares jumped 9.6 percentto $364.16 after hitting a record high of $368.40.

"We've been positive on Microsoft for a while, but I can'tremember the last time I saw it move up this much afterearnings. It is very positive, and helping to boost the overalltape today," said Douglas DePietro, managing director atEvercore Partners in New York.

"Still, the market has been getting tired lately. While Ibelieve we'll see another leg up soon, it isn't out of thequestion that we would need to consolidate near all-time highs."

The Dow Jones industrial average was up 20.21 points,or 0.13 percent, at 15,529.42. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 2.75 points, or 0.16 percent, at 1,754.82. TheNasdaq Composite Index was up 7.56 points, or 0.19percent, at 3,936.52.

For the week thus far, the Dow is up 0.9 percent, the S&P isup 0.6 percent and the Nasdaq is up 0.7 percent. It is the thirdstraight week of gains for both the Dow and S&P, while theNasdaq has climbed in seven of the past eight weeks, up almost10 percent over that period.

Much of those gains have come on expectations that theFederal Reserve will continue its $85 billion a monthbond-purchase program for several months, likely providing afloor for stock prices into 2014.

Among other earnings, United Parcel Service's stockhit a record high at $96.94 after posting a bigger quarterlyprofit and said it expects online sales to boost holiday volume.Shares came off highs and were up 0.6 percent to $95.12.

Zynga said it expects a full-year profit afterreporting better-than-expected third-quarter results due tocost-cutting and a renewed focus on mobile games and corefranchises. Shares jumped 11 percent to $3.93.

With 49 percent of S&P 500 companies having reported, 68.7percent have topped profit expectations, a beat rate that isabove the historical average of 63 percent. However, only 54.2percent have beaten revenue expectations, below the long-termaverage of 61 percent.

Dow component DuPont jumped to the highest in morethan 13 years a day after announcing it will spin off itstitanium dioxide unit within 18 months, yielding to pressurefrom Wall Street to divest the volatile business. Shares hit$62.69 and were recently up 0.3 percent at $61.54.

New orders for long-lasting U.S. manufactured goods outsideof transportation equipment fell in September, possibly due touncertainty over government spending, while a surge in aircraftorders helped boost durable goods orders by 3.7 percent lastmonth, more than expected.

U.S. consumer sentiment dropped in October to its lowestlevel since the end of last year as consumers worriedcongressional dysfunction and the resulting partial federalgovernment shutdown would hurt growth.

In other data the Commerce Department said wholesaleinventories rose 0.5 percent in August, the biggest increasesince January. The government also said inventories rose morethan initially estimated in July.

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