U.S. stocks opened higher on Friday, with Wall Street drawing initial cheer after the government's estimate of second-quarter economic growth proved less dreary than anticipated. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 55 points to 10,041. The S&P 500 Index rose 5 points to 1,052. The Nasdaq Composite climbed 12 points to 2,131. The better than expected GDP number is doing little to lend support to broader market. This is not a good sign. The earnings front is mixed this morning. J Crew is down 5% following earnings. International Rectifier is lower as well following earnings. Novell, Tiffanys, Bebe Stores, and Men's Wearhouse are higher following earnings. One tech stock performing well is 3Par up 20% thanks to a bidding war between Dell and HP. At 10 o'clock weaker than expected consumer confidence number caused the averages to sell off. Then Intel went halted as the company lowered sales guidance. They just raised guidance a month ago. Crazy. The averages fell into the red waiting for Intel to reopen. After the first hour the averages started to rally once again. Crazy. After the first hour the Dow rose 60 points once again. The Nasdaq rose 11 points. A crazy first hour. Through the morning the averages actually improved. The Dow rose 100 points. The Nasdaq rose 19 points. Intel has actually improved rising 1%. So now that the company has confirmed that business is slowing, the stock goes up. A tough market to figure out. Through the afternoon the Dow remained up over 100 points. The Nasdaq up 30 points. A relief rally in process. Only a few stocks are in the red including Goldman Sachs, Research in Motion, HP, and Altria. Altria actually raised their dividend today by 8.6%. In the last hour the averages held their gains. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended up 165 points, or 1.7%, at 10,150.65. The S&P 500 Index rose 17 points, or 1.7%, to 1,064.59, and the Nasdaq Composite gained 35 points, or 1.7%, to close at 2,153.. But the week was littered with disappointing economic reports, leaving the benchmarks down for the week. The Dow posted a weekly loss of 0.6% and the S&P 500 ($SPX) fell 0.7%, with each marking its third straight week of declines. The Nasdaq dropped 1.2% for the week, its second weekly loss in the last three weeks.
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