* Alphabet jumps on strong Q2, lifts other techs
* Verizon jumps on robust quarterly results
* S&P 500 at its highest since early Feb
* Indexes up: Dow 0.51 pct, S&P 0.68 pct, Nasdaq 0.95 pct (Updates to open)
By Amy Caren Daniel
July 24 (Reuters) - U.S. stock indexes climbed on Tuesday and the Nasdaq hit a new record high as Google-parent Alphabet’s strong quarterly results reaffirmed expectations of a robust earnings season and sparked a rally among technology shares.
The benchmark S&P 500 index rose to its highest since early February, and to within 2 percent of its late-January record, as a clutch of robust earnings helped investors shake off concerns over a U.S.-China trade war and a strengthening dollar.
Shares of Alphabet, part of the so-called FAANG group, jumped 5.3 percent to a record high of $1,275.00, pushing the S&P information technology sector 1.24 percent higher.
Other FAANGs also rose. Facebook climbed 2.1 percent, Amazon gained 1.6 percent, Apple rose 0.8 percent, while Netflix inched up 0.3 percent.
Tech stocks have led the recovery from the early 2018 tumult that dragged U.S. stocks into a correction and have helped erase nearly all of the broader market’s losses.
Among other gainers, Verizon rose 1.1 percent after posting better-than-expected quarterly profit and revenue as the wireless carrier attracted more subscribers with unlimited data plans.
“It’s earnings that’s going to propel markets today,” said Peter Cardillo, chief market economist at Spartan Capital Securities in New York.
“We are seeing a host of companies that have reported and some of them have given a good guidance, so it’s a good combination.”
Harley-Davidson, at the center of a brewing trade war between the United States and the European Union, rose 3.8 percent after its profit beat estimates, although it warned new EU tariffs would squeeze margins.
Boeing rose 1 percent, while Caterpillar gained 1.9 percent and were the biggest boosts to the Dow Jones Industrial Average index.
At 9:49 a.m. EDT the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 127.52 points, or 0.51 percent, at 25,171.81, the S&P 500 was up 18.96 points, or 0.68 percent, at 2,825.94 and the Nasdaq Composite was up 74.84 points, or 0.95 percent, at 7,916.71.
Eight of the 11 main S&P 500 sectors were higher.
But not all reports were upbeat. Whirlpool tumbled 12.1 percent after reporting weak quarterly results and cutting full-year forecasts.
Shares of United Technologies dipped 0.9 percent, while 3M dropped 2.7 percent, despite the companies beating quarterly profit expectations.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners by a 2.00-to-1 ratio on the NYSE and for a 1.65-to-1 ratio on the Nasdaq.
The S&P index recorded 24 new 52-week highs and two new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded 83 new highs and 14 new lows. (Reporting by Amy Caren Daniel in Bengaluru; Editing by Sriraj Kalluvila)