NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are trading higher as investors cling to a few hopeful signs like higher profits from a few companies.
Shortly after noon, the Dow Jones industrial average is up 31 points 13,628. The Standard & Poor's 500 is up four to 1,465. The Nasdaq composite index is up 14 to 3,190.
Darden Restaurants, parent of Olive Garden and Red Lobster, is up after reporting a higher quarterly profit. So is homebuilder KB Home.
Apple, which just released the iPhone 5, is also up.
In Europe, Italy's premier and Greece's prime minister met and repeated their conviction for "the absolute need to safeguard the integrity of the eurozone," according to a statement from the Italian leader's office. Spain appears close to working out terms for requesting a bailout from Europe.