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Facebook shares soar on big second quarter

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(AP photo)
Trader Neil Catania, left, and Mark Muller, right, confer on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Monday, July 22, 2013. Asian stocks dipped Thursday July 25, 2013 as investors prepared for a slew of earnings reports in coming days that will give a reading of how confident companies are in the outlook for major economies. Improved German business confidence boosted European markets.

Facebook shares soared Thursday after the social media giant pushed aggressively into mobile advertising and reported much-improved second-quarter revenue and profit.

Facebook reported after the market closed Wednesday that revenue jumped 53 percent to $1.81 billion for the period. It also reversed a year-ago loss.

Those numbers evaporated doubts about Facebook's ability to capitalize on the mobile market, and trading volume in company shares rocketed Thursday.

Facebook shares jumped more than 30 percent Thursday, closing at $34.35.

Technology stocks fared far better than the rest of the market Thursday.

The Dow Jones industrial average edged up two points, just 0.02 percent, to close at 15,544.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose four points, or 0.03 percent, to 1,690. The tech-heavy Nasdaq composite rose 19 points, or 0.6 percent, to 3,599.

Home builder PulteGroup plunged 12 percent to $16.16 after reporting a 14 percent drop in profits.

Rising and falling stocks were evenly split on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume was very light at 1.9 billion shares.

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