Upbeat corporate earnings tempered a gain in jobless claims to lift the markets to a modestly higher open with the Dow adding 9 points to 12,918. Nasdaq rose 14 points to 2957. On the upside
Second quarter earnings more than doubled for eBay (Nasdaq: EBAY) to top analyst estimates as revenue soared. Walgreen (NYSE: WAG) and Express Scripts (Nasdaq: ESRX) ended their seven month dispute with a multiyear agreement that begins on September 15. Nokia (NYSE: NOK) widened second quarter losses as revenue fell but the company sold more Lumia phones than expected. On the downside Anthera Pharmaceuticals (Nasdaq: ANTH) priced its public offering of common stock at the discounted price of $1.00 per share. Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) reversed year ago losses to post a profit for the second quarter but the results fell short of analyst expectations and revenue dropped. Safeway (NYSE: SWY) blamed higher expenses for a drop in second quarter earnings. In the broad market, declining issues outpaced advancers by a margin of nearly 9 to 7 on the NYSE and by more than 10 to 9 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks slipped 2 points to 802.