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Daily Scan: Stocks soar; Clinton defends herself on Benghazi

By NexChange
Capital Markets

Updated throughout the day

October 22

Good evening. Stocks had a strong rally Thursday, as the Dow exited correction territory. The Dow added 1.9%, its highest close in more than two months. The S&P 500 gained 1.7%, and the Nasdaq grew 1.65% after steady gains all day. Caterpillar's stocks rose 2.9% even though the company cut its profit projections for the year. 3M shares gained 4.1%, but also reduced its earnings forecast as it moves to cut 1,500 jobs. McDonald's is lovin' its earnings, and the stock rose 8.1% Thursday. Jobless claims are in, totaling 259,000 compared to the estimate of 265,000.

Here’s what else you need to know:

Clinton talks Benghazi. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was grilled by lawmakers Thursday about her role in the American diplomatic mission in Libya that ended in the death of four Americans. Clinton, who has faced criticism from Republicans since the 2012 attacks, was poised in her defense throughout the interrogation. The hearing adjourned for a break after almost three and a half hours when the Republican committee chairman and two Democratic committee members started a shouting match over Clinton's personal email exchanges. During a 2013 hearing, Clinton accepted responsibility for the security lapses in Benghazi. New York Times

Google's ABCs look strong. Alphabet, the Google parent company, reported revenue gains Thursday. Shares are up 23% this year, and continued to rise Thursday. Third quarter net income reached $3.98 billion, compared to $2.74 billion during the same time last year. Wall Street Journal

American killed during hostage rescue in Iraq. About 70 hostages facing "imminent mass execution" were saved during a helicopter assault operated by U.S. special ops troops, as well as Kurdish and Iraqi forces. One U.S. service member was fatally wounded during the mission. CNN

Masked man kills two in Swedish school. The man killed a student and a teacher, and another teacher and student are being treated for knife injuries. The suspect, who has died of gunshot wounds, was armed with a sword and several knives. BBC

U.S. investigating Venezuelan oil company. The probe takes a look at alleged kickbacks  and "other schemes" that Petróleos de Venezuela required from anyone who wanted to do business. PdVSA is alleged to have looted billions. Wall Street Journal (paywall)

CIT chief John Thain to retire. The move was unexpected for the 60-year-old executive who landed at the helm of Merrill Lynch during the financial crisis, and was drummed out after controversial bonus payouts and a $1.2 million spending binge to re-decorate his office. Thain, a former top Goldman Sachs officer, will be succeded by CIT board member Ellen R. Alemany. Wall Street Journal (paywall)

Europe in holding pattern ahead of ECB meeting. The European Central Bank is in Malta and most watchers expect more stimulus, in part to keep the eu

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