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Overnight Markets: Wall Street rebounds on bargain hunting

Overnight Markets: Wall Street rebounds on bargain hunting

Wall Street bounced back on Tuesday following the previous session’s sharp sell-off helped by some encouraging earnings and data showing factory orders fell less than estimated in December.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 72 points or 0.47%, to end at 15,445. The S&P 500 rose 13 points or 0.76%, to finish at 1,755. The Nasdaq Composite added 35 points or 0.86%, to close at 4,032.

The drop in shares after Monday’s sell-off proved enticing for investors looking for bargains as emerging market concerns retreated and their currencies moved off recent lows. The focus was on macroeconomic data in the wake of a rout in emerging market currencies, which triggered rate hikes by some central banks.
Data on Tuesday showed new orders for US factory goods declined in December, but increased for a third straight month when the volatile transportation sector was excluded.

Consumer discretionary and financials were among the best-performing stocks. Pfizer (PFE.N) gained 2.8% after Jefferies upgraded the largest US drugmaker's stock to a "buy" from a "hold" rating.

Michael Kors Holdings Ltd (KORS.N) reported a 77% jump in third-quarter profit as shoppers snapped up its handbags and accessories, pushing the company's shares up 17.3%.

Bank shares were underpinned by U.S-traded shares of UBS (UBS.N) and Itaú Unibanco (ITUB.N), which rallied. Itaú, Brazil's largest private-sector lender, reported record fourth-quarter profit that beat analysts' estimates. UBS swung to a larger-than-expected fourth-quarter profit and announced higher dividends and bonuses. Itaú ADRs shot up 7.6% and UBS added 5.9%.

J.C. Penney Co Inc (JCP.N) shares dropped 10.6% after the US department store chain reported a modest rise in quarterly comparable sales.

Shares of Yum Brands Inc (YUM.N) added 8.9% after the KFC parent reaffirmed its 2014 profit outlook and said a resurgent bird flu in China had not hurt national sales in its top market.

In Asia, shares gained on Wednesday in late morning trade after US shares rebounded and Japanese companies posted earnings that cheered investors.

The MSCI Asia Pacific Index climbed 0.8% to 131 as of 11:03 a.m. in Tokyo. Japan’s Topix index climbed 1.9%, while the smaller Nikkei 225 Stock Average rose 1.2% after plummeting 4.2% yesterday.

South Korea’s Kospi index rose 0.6%. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 Index slipped 0.2%, while New Zealand’s NZX 50 Index added 0.3%. Markets in mainland China and and Vietnam are closed for holidays.

The Hang Seng Index increased 0.4%. Taiwan’s Taiex Index lost 2% and Singapore’s Straits Times Index rose 0.5%.

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