U.S. stocks soared Friday on upbeat economic data and corporate earnings, with major indices rebounding from massive sell-offs early this week.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average leapt 263.17 points, or 1.63 percent, to 16,380.41. The S&P 500 jumped 24.00 points, or 1.29 percent, to 1,886.76. The Nasdaq Composite Index rallied 41.05 points, or 0.97 percent, to 4,258.44.
Encouraging data and earnings coming out in the day temporally dispersed investors' fears mainly triggered by global growth concerns as well as macro events such as Ebola, which had rocked Wall Street in the past two weeks.
U.S. privately-owned housing starts in September rose 6.3 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.017 million, said the U.S. Commerce Department on Friday. Building permits, a gauge of future construction, increased 1.5 percent last month, it added.
U.S. consumer sentiment jumped to the highest level in seven years in October, according to a survey released Friday. The Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan preliminary reading of the consumer sentiment index registered 86.4 in October, the highest since July 2007.
On the corporate earnings side, Morgan Stanley's third-quarter profit almost doubled from the previous year and easily beat analysts' expectations. The company reported net income from continuing operations applicable to Morgan Stanley of 1.7 billion U.S. dollars, or 84 cents per diluted share, compared with income of 889 million dollars, or 44 cents per diluted share, a year ago. Analysts had expected earnings of 54 cents per share.
General Electric Co. posted third-quarter operating earnings per share of 38 cents, topping analysts' expectations by 1 cent. Its revenue for the quarter jumped 1 percent year over year to 36. 2 billion dollars, missing market forecast.
Despite the rally, the three indices still ended the week with losses, down 1.0 percent, 1.0 percent and 0.4 percent, respectively.
The CBOE Volatility Index, often referred to as Wall Street's fear gauge, tumbled 12.74 percent to end at 21.99 on Friday.
In other markets, U.S. crude prices rose slightly Friday after the market declined significantly earlier this week. Light, sweet crude for November moved up 5 cents to settle at 82.75 U.S. dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange dropped Friday on a stronger dollar, with the most active gold contract for December delivery down 2.2 dollars, or 0.18 percent, to settle at 1,239.0 dollars per ounce.
The U.S. dollar rose versus most of other currencies Friday amid upbeat economic data out of the country. In late New York trading, the euro lost to 1.2775 dollars from 1.2796 dollars of the previous session, and the dollar bought 106.68 Japanese yen, higher than 106.12 yen of the previous session.