Stocks leap on earnings; Dow up 250 points

Getty Images A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

Getty Images
A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

U.S. stocks surged on Friday as investors bet on further stimulus from central banks and corporations including General Electric and Morgan Stanley reporting profits that topped expectations.

Morgan Stanley gained in early New York trading after the investment bank tallied third-quarter earnings that beat estimates. General Electric climbed after its quarterly profit exceeded expectations.

The CBOE Volatility Index, a measure of investor uncertainty, dropped 16 percent to 21.05.

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The Commerce Department on Friday reported new-home construction climbed 6.3 percent in August, signaling improvement in the U.S. residential real-estate market.

The preliminary read for consumer sentiment in October came in at 86.4 versus a 84.0 estimate.

On Thursday, St. Louis Federal Reserve Bank President James Bullard said the central bank should think about postponing the end of its bond purchases.

DJIA Dow Jones Industrial Average 16358.44
241.20 1.50%
S&P 500 S&P 500 Index 1891.07
28.31 1.52%
NASDAQ Nasdaq Composite Index 4277.79
60.40 1.43%

At or near session highs, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was lately up 174 points, or 1.1 percent, at 16,291.24, with GE leading blue-chip gains that extended to 28 of 30 components.

The S&P 500 added 20.02 points, or 1.1 percent, to 1,882.78, with energy the best performing of its 10 major industry groups.

The Nasdaq climbed 45.77 points, or 1.1 percent, to 4,263.16.

For every share falling, roughly four gained on the New York Stock Exchange, where 174 million shares traded as of 9:50 a.m. Eastern. Composite volume hit 468 million.

The dollar gained against the currencies of major U.S. trading partners and the yield on the 10-year Treasury note used to figure mortgage rates rose 3 basis points to 2.188 percent.

On the New York Mercantile Exchange, oil futures for November delivery were up 35 cents at $83.05 a barrel and gold futures for December delivery dropped $3.20 to $1,238.00 an ounce.

On Thursday, U.S. stocks ended little changed, with the Dow industrials recouping much of a 206-point deficit, as investors balanced worries about global growth against mostly better-than-expected U.S. earnings and economic reports.

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