(Corrects attribution of quotes in paragraphs 8,9)
* McDonald’s up on turnaround talk
* Yum Brands gains on year-end confidence
* Visa, MasterCard rise as China opportunity seen
* Indexes up: Dow 0.45 pct, S&P 0.51 pct, Nasdaq 0.43 pct
By Noel Randewich
April 22 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose in afternoon trading on Wednesday as Visa’s potential expansion into China and talk of a turnaround at McDonald’s helped investors see the bright side of mixed quarterly earnings.
Visa gained as much as 7.1 percent to hit a record of $69.98, while MasterCard came shy of its all-time high, after China said it would open up its market to foreign firms for clearing domestic bank card transactions.
MasterCard was up 4.04 percent at $91.31.
A majority of the 10 major S&P 500 sectors rose, with the tech index gaining 0.96 percent on the back of Visa.
McDonald’s surged 3.12 percent to $97.86 after it said it was working on a plan to reverse its shrinking sales.
At 2:27 p.m., the Dow Jones industrial average rose 80.57 points, or 0.45 percent, to 18,030.16, the S&P 500 gained 10.76 points, or 0.51 percent, to 2,108.05 and the Nasdaq Composite added 21.52 points, or 0.43 percent, to 5,035.62.
A week ago, more than 80 percent of the S&P 500 companies to have posted their March-quarter earnings had beaten estimates. But with 121 reports now in, that number has slipped to 71.9 percent - just above the 70 percent earnings beat rate seen over the past four quarters. Many have blamed misses on revenue on a strong dollar for making their products more expensive overseas.
“People are seeing the negative effects of foreign exchange and that’s not been drastically worse than expected,” said Michael Sansoterra, the portfolio manager of the RidgeWorth Large Cap Growth Fund in Atlanta.
“They’re going back and looking at company fundamentals. Today you’re getting a bit of ‘glass is half full’”.
Yum Brands jumped 4.33 percent after the restaurant operator said late on Tuesday it was recovering from a meat scare in China and expected a strong year-end finish.
Companies reporting results after the bell on Wednesday include AT&T, Facebook and EBay.
Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by 1,734 to 1,204, for a 1.44-to-1 ratio; on the Nasdaq, 1,538 issues rose and 1,170 fell, for a 1.31-to-1 ratio favoring advancers.
The benchmark S&P 500 was posting 20 new 52-week highs and no new lows; the Nasdaq Composite was recording 80 new highs and 27 new lows. (Additional reporting by Tanya Agrawal; Editing by Rodrigo Campos and Nick Zieminski)