Wall Street advanced on Friday with Oracle's upbeat outlook lifting tech stocks, though weak trading volume hinted the rally lacks enthusiasm.
All three major stock indexes looked set to end the week in positive territory after two straight weeks of declines. The S&P was on track to notch its best week in eight, raising renewed questions about how much upside potential was left.
Fundamentals are improving, but I'm not sure the economy will jump back on the high-speed rails to expansion like investors are hoping, said Andrew Wilkinson, senior market analyst at Interactive Brokers Group in Greenwich, Connecticut.
I think expectations are going to be a little more sober heading into the future.
Trading volume has been weak, with Tuesday's session the lowest of the year, pointing to a lack of conviction.
The stock of Oracle Corp
The S&P technology index <.GSPT> rose 0.7 percent on Friday, and is up more than 3 percent so far this quarter.
In a further boost to techs, Accenture
The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> was up 80.41 points, or 0.66 percent, at 12,250.97. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> was up 9.29 points, or 0.71 percent, at 1,318.95. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> was up 25.95 points, or 0.95 percent, at 2,762.37.
On the downside in tech shares, BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd
Oracle and RIM were diametrically opposed and we're seeing the stocks react accordingly, said Michael Quigley, tech analyst at Wedgewood Partners in St. Louis. RIM's growth is pausing because it is in the middle of a product transition, but Oracle shows IT spending continues to be strong. The whole software chain seems to be doing well.
The U.S. economy grew more quickly than previously estimated in the fourth quarter as businesses restocked shelves to meet rising demand, while consumer sentiment fell to its lowest level in more than a year in March.
U.S. consumer sentiment in March fell to its lowest level in more than a year as gasoline and food prices rose, according to the latest consumer survey from Thomson Reuters and the University of Michigan.
Edwards Lifesciences Corp
(Reporting by Ryan Vlastelica; Editing by Jan Paschal)