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US stocks sharply higher in midday trading on strong earnings

12.10pm: US stock markets sharply higher at midday with the S&P 500 poised for a record close US stocks powered higher into the noon hour as a batch of strong corporate earnings had investors shrugging off economic growth concerns earlier in the week. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 189 points at 35,013, while the broader-based S&P 500 rose 35, or 0.8%, at 4,402. The tech heavy Nasdaq, meanwhile, climbed 107 points to stand at 14,792 as the Nasdaq 100 hit a record high.  “The post-Monday rally shows no sign of slowing down, and instead stocks seem determined to power ahead into the weekend and beyond,” IG chief market analyst Chris Beauchamp wrote.   “The Monday selloff seems like a moment of brief panic, and while it was startlingly short-lived, it was enough it appears to reset sentiment and activity and prompt a resurgence of bullish momentum,” Beauchamp added. Social media stocks led the tech rally, buoyed by better-than-expected financial results from Snap Inc (NYSE:SNAP) and Twitter (NYSE:TWTR). Shares of Snap were up more than 20% at midday. This, in turn, also boosted Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) by more than 5% and Alphabet Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG) gained more than 2% after Credit Suisse (NYSE:CS.) set a new Street-high target of $3,350 on the search giant, implying better than 29% upside.   9.45am: Proactive North America headlines: Golden Arrow Resources Corp (TSX-V:GRG, OTCQB:GARWF) says new exploration program is underway at its Argentinian Yanso gold project PharmaDrug to debut a new ticker symbol on the Canadian Securities Exchange in August Loncor Gold Inc closes its upsized C$5.5M private placement financing NorthWest Copper (TSX-V:NWST) Corp initiates first drill program at East Niv property in British Columbia Medallion Resources poised to partner with Australian company ACDC to bring its rare earth separation technology to the Murray Basin Cloud DX (TSX-V:CDX, OTCQB:CDXFF) reaffirms its commitment to gender equality 9.36am: Wall Street starts in the green Wall Street made a positive start to Friday’s session after a set of strong earnings from tech companies lifted market sentiment. Shortly after the opening bell, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 0.52% at 35,003, while the S&P 500 climbed 0.46% to 4,387 and the Nasdaq rose 0.36% to 14,737. Shares in Snap Inc (NYSE:SNAP), which reported blowout earnings overnight, jumped 22.7% to US$77.27 in early deals, while Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) was up 1.9% at US$70.86 after reporting a jump in revenues. 7:45am: Wall Street to open higher The main indices on Wall Street are expected to start in the green as traders look to end the week on a high note. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is seen rising at least 150 points with the S&P 500 and Nasdaq also expected to open at least 0.4% higher. Market analysts Naeem Aslam at AvaTrade said: “Despite a significant growth in jobless claims last week, the three major indices closed in the green yesterday, boosted by a strong performance by technology stocks. “Stock traders should understand that the growth in tech stocks came amid rising concerns related to the rise in Covid cases caused by the Delta variant. Investors are unsure what this update means for the economy’s recovery in the coming months. “Investors should keep in mind that, at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, tech stocks provided a haven for distressed investors due to their higher-than-average earnings performance. Responding with the same strategy, investors are moving away from stocks positively correlated with economic cycles to tech stocks in an attempt to hedge their risk.” Aslam said stock traders are awaiting the earnings of technology giants such as Amazon.com, Microsoft, Apple, Google, and Facebook, which are set to be released next week. Four things to watch for on Friday: Earnings at the end of the week include energy firm NextEra Energy (NYSE:NEE) Inc and engineering products company Roper Technologies Inc Both Snap Inc (NYSE:SNAP) and Twitter Inc (NYSE:TWTR) shares are likely to be in focus following their better than expected results after yesterday’s close American Express Co could also attract attention after also beating expectations amid an acceleration in card spending On the macro front, US flash PMIs are the only major announcements likely to draw attention