Stocks rose on Tuesday as a profit from United Technologies Corp topped expectations and lifted the Dow, and better-than-expected results from technology companies offset concerns about corporate profits and even cloudier outlooks.

The Nasdaq rose as chipmaker Texas Instruments Inc posted a surprise quarterly profit and Broadcom Corp made a bid to buy storage-equipment maker Emulex Corp .

Texas Instruments is helping tech, and that is a sector people are definitely looking to rotate into, said Kevin Kruszenski, head of listed trading at KeyBanc Capital Markets in Cleveland.

Number one, it's the early cycle in terms of an economic recovery and those companies don't have a lot of debt issues that other ones do, so refinancing and credit risk isn't as big of a problem for those companies.

Diversified U.S. manufacturer United Technologies Corp reported a 27.8 percent fall in quarterly profit as the slumping economy crimped demand for its jet engines and air conditioners. Shares rose 3.8 percent to $47.55 as profit topped analysts' expectations.

Caterpillar Inc shares dropped 4.3 percent to $29.16 as the top weight on the Dow after the world's No. 1 maker of building equipment posted first-quarter results and said it will suspend share repurchases.

Drugmaker Merck & Co Inc , which plans to buy rival Schering-Plough Corp later this year, reported lower-than expected sales and earnings and cited the global economic slowdown. Shares were off 5 percent to $23.95.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> gained 14.49 points, or 0.18 percent, to 7,856.22. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> rose 3.25 points, or 0.39 percent, to 835.64. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> added 14.13 points, or 0.88 percent, to 1,622.34.

U.S. stocks had risen for six consecutive weeks, the longest for the S&P 500 since 2007, and the Dow scored its biggest percentage gain since 1938.

After the close on Monday, Texas Instruments reported a surprise quarterly profit on better-than-expected revenue as demand for its chips improved in Asia, and gave a rosier-than-expected outlook for the current quarter. Shares slid 2 percent to $16.95 Tuesday.

On the merger front, chipmaker Broadcom Corp said it made an unsolicited bid for Emulex, with an equity value of $764 million.

Broadcom shares slid 10 percent to $19.56, while Emulex surged 45 percent to $9.57.

Chemical maker DuPont Co

reported a 59 percent fall in quarterly earnings, cut its full year 2009 profit forecast due to weak demand, and said it will reduce costs further. Shares rose 3.7 percent to $27.73.

Soft-drink maker Coca-Cola Co shed 3 percent to $42.98 after posting first-quarter results that included a 3 percent drop in revenues.

Shares of General Motors Corp jumped 5 percent to $1.74 after an independent oversight report on the Treasury Department's corporate rescue fund said the Obama administration will make up to $5 billion available to GM through May and $500 million to Chrysler as Chrysler seeks to reach an alliance with Fiat .

At the close of trading on Friday, the blended growth rate for the first quarter, which combines actual numbers for companies that have reported earnings and estimates for companies that have yet to report, stood at negative 37.4 percent, according to Thomson Reuters data.

(Reporting by Chuck Mikolajczak; Editing by Theodore d'Afflisio and Jeffrey Benkoe)