US STOCKS-Wall St ends higher after Ukraine concerns ease

jueves 14 de agosto de 2014 17:15 GYT

* Putin strikes conciliatory tone on Ukraine

* Berkshire Hathaway stock tops $200,000 for the first time

* Dow up 0.4 pct; S&P 500 up 0.4 pct; Nasdaq up 0.4 pct (Updates to close)

By Akane Otani

NEW YORK, Aug 14 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks advanced on Thursday after conciliatory comments from Russia helped ease concerns about escalation of the conflict in Ukraine and offset some uninspiring earnings.

Gains were broad, with all but one of the S&P's 10 primary sector indexes rising for the day. An S&P index of healthcare stocks gained 1.2 percent and led the advance, while an index of energy stocks dragged, slipping 0.5 percent.

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Russia would stand up for itself but not at the cost of confrontation with the outside world, striking a softer tone after tough rhetoric aimed at Ukraine for several months. The market had been pressured in recent weeks by uncertainty over the conflict.

Earnings season continued to wind down, with 92 percent of S&P 500 companies having reported quarterly earnings by Thursday morning. Of the companies that have reported results so far, 67.7 percent beat analysts' expectations.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc, the nation's largest retailer, reported earnings and revenue that met expectations. But the company cut its forecast for coming quarters. The Dow component's stock rose 0.5 percent to $74.39.   Continuación...