U.S. stocks closed higher on the final day of trading this week. Economic data exceeding analyst expectations led all three indexes higher. Weaker-than-Expected earnings reports from Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) and Bank of America (NYSE: BAC) weighed on the Tech and Financial sectors respectively.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 56 points, or 0.5%, to 12341. The Standard & Poor's 500 index climbed 5 points or 0.4%, to 1320, with every sector besides technology in the green. The tech-heavy Nasdaq clawed 4.43 points higher or 0.16 percent for the day to 2769, pushed lower by an 8% decline in shares of Google.
Bank of America's earnings also fell short of analyst expectations with considerable revenue declines across the bulk of its businesses sending shares down 2.36 percent
Outside of the earnings report, the market was bolstered by consumer sentiment data indicating improved sentiment for early April. News on core inflation, besides food and energy prices was also better than expected, up only 0.1%. Manufacturing data indicated a sharp rise in activity in the New York area bringing industrial production to the highest levels in recent months.
Assure Guaranty Ltd. (NYSE: AGO), a holding company, with operating subsidiaries that provide credit protection products to the public finance sector gained 24 percent today. MBIA Inc. (NYSE: MBI), which provides financial guarantee insurance was also higher today, adding 17.36 percent.
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