Stocks Ended Higher on Robust Bank Earnings

U.S. stocks ended sharply higher on Friday, after a series of strong bank earnings boosted confidence in the U.S. economy. The Dow Jones Industrial Average gained 269.25 points, or 1.03%, to 26,412.30. The S&P 500 rose 19.09 points, or 0.66%, to 2,907.41. The Nasdaq Composite advanced 36.80 points, or 0.46%, to 7,984.16. For the week, the Dow edged down 0.1%, the S&P 500 gained 0.5% and the Nasdaq added 0.6%.

Oil futures settled higher on Friday, as violence in Libya raised the risks to the nation’s oil production and economic data from China helped ease concerns over a slowdown in energy demand. West Texas Intermediate crude for May delivery rose 31 cents, or 0.5%, to settle at $63.89 a barrel. June Brent added 72 cents, or 1%, to $71.55 a barrel.For the week, WTI gained of 1.3%, while Brent saw a weekly advance 1.7%.

Quarterly results from Dow component JPMorgan Chase & Co., which kicked off a new earnings season early Friday, were better than expected, while Wells Fargo & Co. also posted robust revenue and in-line earnings.

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