Stocks Opened Higher after Upbeat Retail Sales

U.S. stocks open higher on Friday after sales at U.S. retailers topped expectations. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately advanced 122.21 points, or 0.43%, to 28,616.41. The S&P 500 rose 12.55 points, or 0.36%, to 3,495.89. The Nasdaq Composite gained 58.35 points, or 0.50%, to 11,772.22.

Oil futures lost ground Friday, with the U.S. benchmark clinging to a small weekly gain, as an accelerating rise in COVID-19 cases in the U.S. and Europe heightens worries about demand for crude. West Texas Intermediate crude for November delivery fell 27 cents, or 0.7%, to $40.69 a barrel. December Brent crude was off 35 cents, or 0.8%, to $42.81 a barrel.

Sales at U.S. retailers accelerated far more than expected in September, driven by a rebound in sales at clothing stores. Headline retail sales rose 1.9% in September from August after a 0.6% gain in the prior month, the Commerce Department said Friday. Consensus economists had been looking for a rise of 0.8%, according to Bloomberg consensus data.

Ford Motor Co (F) on Friday said its China sales rose 25% over July to September from the same period a year earlier to 164,352 vehicles, attributing the increase to product launches and a localisation strategy.

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