U.S. stocks rose on Wednesday, recovering from a steep sell-off in the previous session, as details emerged about an aid package for Greece that could calm fears over a possible sovereign debt default.
Investors are looked ahead to comments from the Federal Reserve Open Market Committee, which is expected to hold interest rates near zero and repeat its vow of very low rates for an extended period. The statement is expected at around 2:15 p.m. EDT.
International Monetary Fund Managing Director Dominique Strauss-Kahn estimated a eurozone/IMF aid package for Greece at 100 billion to 120 billion euros over three years, according to opposition members in Germany's parliament who met with him. On Tuesday, Greece and Portugal credit ratings were downgraded, triggering a sell-off in U.S. equities.
The size of the aid package hopefully puts the issue of Greece and contagion to rest, but only time will tell, said Henry Smith, chief investment officer at Haverford Trust in Philadelphia.
However, I think Greece is going to end up being a sideshow to the real story, which is the uninterrupted string of very strong earnings reports.
Earnings season stayed in high gear, with Dow Chemical Co up 5 percent to $31.53 after reporting a profit that beat expectations.
The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> was up 33.78 points, or 0.31 percent, at 11,025.77. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> rose 5.70 points, or 0.48 percent, at 1,189.41. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> gained 8.93 points, or 0.36 percent, at 2,480.40.
The Nasdaq was lifted by Broadcom Corp , up 5.6 percent to $36.79 a day after swinging to a first-quarter profit, beating expectations, and giving an outlook above the consensus estimate.
Financials will remain in focus a day after members of a U.S. Senate subcommittee grilled Goldman Sachs executives on the bank's role in the financial meltdown, heightening the possibility of financial reform.
U.S. Senate Republicans offered counterproposals in a bid to water down portions of a massive Democratic bill.
(Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)