Dear Valued Visitor,

We have noticed that you are using an ad blocker software.

Although advertisements on the web pages may degrade your experience, our business certainly depends on them and we can only keep providing you high-quality research based articles as long as we can display ads on our pages.

To view this article, you can disable your ad blocker and refresh this page or simply login.

We only allow registered users to use ad blockers. You can sign up for free by clicking here or you can login if you are already a member.

Microsoft Corporation (MSFT), Bank of America Corp (BAC) & The Top Three Stocks on the Dow (.DJI)

It was a week without a definitive direction on Wall Street, but at the end of the day, stocks continued to move higher. The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 1.13% this week and the S&P 500 rose 1.74%. On the economic front, we saw slow home sales on Monday, decent unemployment news on Thursday, and weaker-than-expected GDP and consumer confidence on Friday. But investors focused on more company-specific items to drive stocks higher.

DuPont Fabros Technology, Inc. (NYSE:DFT) led the Dow by jumping 7.5% this week. Last quarter’s earnings disappointment set extremely low expectations for the company in the first quarter, but it was able to meet them. First-quarter revenue rose 2% to $10.4 billion, and earnings from continued operations fell slightly to $1.46 billion, or $1.56 per share. The real hope was that earnings will pick up later in 2013 because ag unit sales were up 14% and volume grew 8%, so we could be in for much better results in the future.

Microsoft Corporation (MSFT)Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) rose 6.8% this week as sentiment toward the company continued to improve. Microsoft beat earnings estimates, and the stock continued its steady rise all week. The two main news items were a patent ruling win against Motorola Solutions Inc (NYSE:MSI) and a debt offering. The patent ruling was the first of two major cases in which Google Inc (NASDAQ:GOOG)‘s Motorola subsidiary had claimed it was owed $4 billion in royalties, but the judge found that $1.8 million was a more appropriate payment. The second trial is set for this summer. The company also announced $2.7 billion in bond sales.

Bank of America Corp (NYSE:BAC) rounds out the top three, gaining 6.5% this week. The stock is especially sensitive to economic news, and despite GDP growth that came in lower than expected, investors were happy to see solid growth, and decent unemployment data helped pushed the stock higher. The company also settled with former Merrill Lynch brokers who claimed they were owed deferred compensation. The company will pay $21 million to settle the class action lawsuit, putting another black eye from the financial crisis behind it.

The article The Top 3 Stocks on the Dow originally appeared on

Fool contributor Travis Hoium owns shares of Microsoft. The Motley Fool recommends Google and owns shares of Bank of America, Google, and Microsoft.

Copyright © 1995 – 2013 The Motley Fool, LLC. All rights reserved. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

DOWNLOAD FREE REPORT: Warren Buffett's Best Stock Picks

Let Warren Buffett, George Soros, Steve Cohen, and Daniel Loeb WORK FOR YOU.

If you want to beat the low cost index funds by 19 percentage points per year, look no further than our monthly newsletter.In this free report you can find an in-depth analysis of the performance of Warren Buffett's entire historical stock picks. We uncovered Warren Buffett's Best Stock Picks and a way to for Buffett to improve his returns by more than 4 percentage points per year.

Bonus Biotech Stock Pick: You can also find a detailed bonus biotech stock pick that we expect to return more than 50% within 12 months.
Subscribe me to Insider Monkey's Free Daily Newsletter
This is a FREE report from Insider Monkey. Credit Card is NOT required.