Stock Market Today: Ford Surprises While Comcast Grows

Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.

For a welcome change, investors can expect a positive start to the stock market today: The Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI  ) gained 75 points, or 0.5%, in premarket trading this morning. Global markets traded mostly higher overnight after the Turkish central bank called an emergency meeting to discuss raising interest rates. The Turkish lira has plunged lately as part of the emerging market sell-off that has also hurt U.S. indexes -- but that dynamic seems to have paused for now.

Meanwhile, news is breaking this morning on several stocks that could see heavy trading in today's session, including Ford (NYSE: F  ) , Comcast (NASDAQ: CMCSA  ) , and DuPont (NYSE: DD  ) .

Ford today reported stronger than expected revenue for the fourth quarter. Sales came in at $37.6 billion, solidly ahead of the $35.2 billion that analysts expected. The automaker benefited from a sharply improving industry while also gaining share in the key North American market. Ford delivered $0.31 a share in profit, even with last year's haul. Ford also affirmed its 2014 outlook, which calls for a slight dip in profitability as the company launches 16 new or refreshed products in the U.S. The stock is up 2.4% in premarket trading.

Comcast said today that quarterly revenue rose by 6%, to nearly $17 billion. Adjusted profit improved by 27% for the entertainment conglomerate, to $0.66 a share. The company even managed to boost cable subscribers, adding 43,000 customers to its rolls in addition to almost 400,000 new broadband users. Comcast also took the opportunity to announce a 15% boost to its dividend, and said it will spend $3 billion on share repurchases in 2014. The stock is up 2.8% in premarket trading.

Finally, DuPont today booked fourth-quarter earnings of $0.59 a share, up from $0.20 last year. Sales improved by 6% to reach $7.7 billion as the conglomerate saw healthy volume growth across all of its business lines and geographic regions. DuPont CEO Ellen Kullman credited a "gradually improving global economy" with helping the company log a broad boost in sales and profitability. However, DuPont's 2014 outlook called for just a 4% rise in revenue this year, to $37 billion -- a bit below the $38 billion that Wall Street expected. The stock is up 1.8% in premarket trading.

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