On Tuesday U.S. stocks opened higher with the S&P 500 less than a percentage point away from a record high. The rally came on the heels of better-than-expected results from healthcare giants Johnson & Johnson and UnitedHealth.

For the quarter, Johnson & Johnson’s sales inched up from $20.01 billion to $20.02 billion beating analysts projections of $19.61 billion. Though their first-quarter net income of $3.75 is is down 14% from $4.37 billion or $1.60 per share a year earlier, when adjusted J&J earned $2.10 per share beating analysts projections of $2.03 per share. J&J shares rose 1.2% in pre-market trading on Tuesday.

Meanwhile, UnitedHealth net earnings rose 22.2% to 3.47 billion or $3.56 per share. The growth is attributed to the addition of 880,00 new members to their health care plans. When adjusted, UnitedHealth earned $3.73 per share beating analysts projections of $3.60 per share. Total earnings grew 9.3% to $60.31 billion beating projections of $59.7 billion. UnitedHealth shares rose 2.8% in pre-market trading on Tuesday.

Elsewhere the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 0.37% or 97.2 points and stood at 26,482.19 at the open. The Nasdaq Composite rose 0.31% or 24.56 points and was at 8,000.57 at the opening bell. The S&P 500 rose by 6.68 points or 0.23% and opened at 2,912.26.


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