Stocks edge higher as investors assess earnings

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Stocks rose for the fifth time in six days as higher profits at big companies helped investors shrug off discouraging news about jobs and retail spending. Goodyear Tire surged to its highest in nearly six years after earnings beat forecasts. CBS jumped after it, too, beat expectations and speeded up its stock buybacks. ‘The momentum from earnings continues,’ said Andres Garcia-Amaya, at JPMorgan. Stocks also got a lift from deal news: Time Warner Cable surged 7% after it agreed to be acquired by Comcast for $45.2 billion in stock. Stocks opened lower on reports the number of people seeking jobless benefits rose last week and retail sales fell in January.

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