US STOCKS-Wall St rises modestly after new home sales data
* HP gains after results, job cut plans
* Aeropostale plunges after outlook
* New home sales rebound
* PTC shares soar on EU backing for muscular dystrophy drug
* Indexes up: Dow 0.33 pct, S&P 0.3 pct, Nasdaq 0.32 pct (Updates to market open, adds quote)
By Chuck Mikolajczak
NEW YORK, May 23 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose modestly on Friday, after a better-than-expected reading on the housing market, as the S&P held just below its record intraday high.
Sales of new U.S. single-family homes increased 6.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 433,000 units, ending two straight months of declines, the latest evidence the housing market may be finding its footing.
The S&P is 0.2 percent from its record intraday high of 1,902.17 set on May 13 and is above its record closing high of 1,897.45 set on the same day. The index has been range-bound between the highs and its 50-day moving average as investors have been unsure of the pace of the economic recovery. Continuación...