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Wednesday Morning Business Brief

April 25, 2012, 7:05 AM

Wednesday Morning Business Brief

Stocks closed mixed Tuesday, but that was before Apple reported blow-out earnings. The Dow gained 74 points, or 0.6 percent, to 13,022. The S&P added 5 and the Nasdaq fell nearly 9 points. Futures trading suggests a higher opening.

  • International stock markets rose today after earnings from Apple Inc. and other U.S. companies blew past expectations, providing a distraction from the economic and political turbulence intensifying in Europe over its debt crisis. Benchmark crude oil rose past $104 a barrel. The dollar fell against the euro and the yen.
  • The Federal Reserve today wraps up a two-day policy setting session. Along with the Fed's written statement, Chairman Ben Bernanke will hold a news conference to outline the central bank's outlook for the economy.
  • Apple shares soared nearly 7 percent in after-hours trading. The world's most valuable company defied skeptics once again with better-than-expected earnings. It sold nearly twice as many iPhones during the recent quarter, compared to a year earlier.
  • An unexpected drop in Britain's first quarter GDP has put the country officially back in recession for the first time since 2009. The Office for National Statistics said Wednesday that GDP fell by 0.2 percent. The consensus in the markets was that the British economy eked out modest growth of 0.1 percent

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