Housing starts climbed in June to the highest level in more than three years to boost the markets to a sharply higher close with the Dow soaring 103 points to 12,908. Nasdaq leaped 38 points to 2948. On the upside
Aruba Networks (Nasdaq: ARUN) was selected as the official wireless network provider for Black Hat USA 2012 for the fourth year in a row. Amphenol (NYSE: APH) reported higher second quarter earnings that topped analyst estimates and lifted its full year guidance. VMware (NYSE: VMW) named EMC (NYSE: EMC) executive Pat Gelsinger as its new chief executive. On the downside Knight Capital (NYSE: KCG) blamed losses from the Facebook (Nasdaq: FB) initial public offering for sharply lower second quarter earnings. Harte-Hanks (NYSE: HHS) blamed an impairment charge for warning of a second quarter loss. Stifel Nicolaus downgraded Penn Virginia (NYSE: PVA) to a Hold rating. In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of 5 to 3 on the NYSE and by more than 7 to 5 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks gained 5 points to 805.