Sharply Higher Close On Upbeat Data

Upbeat economic data boosted the markets to a sharply higher close with the Dow surging 106 points to 14,818. Nasdaq climbed 27 points to 3307.

On the upside

Orchard Supply Hardware (Nasdaq: OSH) expects first quarter same store sales to climb 9.0% - 11.0% and extended the date to reach an agreement with its term loan lenders to June 30, 2013 from May 1, 2013.

Century Aluminum (Nasdaq: CENX) will pay approximately $61 million in cash to acquire the Sebree aluminum smelter in Kentucky.

First quarter earnings surged for Medidata Solutions (Nasdaq: MDSO) to beat expectations by a wide margin prompting the company to lift its full year guidance.

On the downside

J. P. Morgan downgraded Leap Wireless International (Nasdaq: LEAP) to an Underweight rating.

Greenway Medical Technologies (NYSE: GWAY) warned of losses for the 2013 fiscal year.

Investors locked in profits on Biolase (Nasdaq: BIOL).

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of more than 3 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 2 to 1 on Nasdaq. The broader S&P 500 index gained 11 points to 1593.

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