Week ending April 20: Blue chips post strong first-quarter earnings.
Markets surged last week as blue-chip stocks posted surprisingly strong first-quarter 2007 results. The Morningstar US Market Index rose 1.95% for the week ending April 20. Financial services stocks were among the best performers as markets got first-hand evidence of these companies' overall earnings power despite problems in the home-lending segment. Prominent U.S. multinational companies also reported robust earnings for the quarter, boosting the market's confidence that a healthy global economy can compensate for a slowdown in the U.S.
All nine Morningstar style indexes finished in positive territory. The Morningstar Large Value Index claimed top honors with a 2.39% gain, while the Morningstar Large Core Index finished a close second. The Morningstar Small Growth Index came in last with a 0.5% advance.
Blue-chip financial firms J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.
Flash memory chipmaker Spansion's