This is what we like to see: A massive, diversified, global company posting better-than-expected results and referring to strong economic growth as part of the reason. General Electric's fourth quarter profits, reported this morning, climbed 18% from the same quarter last year to $5.37 billion, or 51 cents a share.

Analysts were looking for 50 cents. So it's no big surprise, but a nice confirmation of positive trends I've been expecting to hear more about this earnings season. Even better, it looks like that news alone will be enough to give stocks a lift today -- or at least this morning.

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