NEW YORK — U.S. stocks rose, with the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index climbing the most in five months to erase a weekly loss, as signs that tensions are easing in Ukraine outweighed concern over crises in the Middle East.
Gap advanced 5.9 percent as the retailer’s earnings and revenue topped estimates. Coach added 5.4 percent to lead a rally in apparel companies. Zynga tumbled 1.4 percent after cutting its full-year outlook. News Corp. slid 1.6 percent after fourth-quarter earnings missed estimates as the company struggled in its transition from print to digital.
The S&P 500 jumped 1.2 percent to 1,931.59 at 4 p.m. Friday in New York, the most since March 4. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 185.66 points, or 1.1 percent, to 16,553.93. About 5.6 billion shares changed hands on U.S. exchanges, 2.6 percent below the three-month average.
“For the most part the market has been pretty resilient over the last week or so,” Michael James, a Los Angeles-based managing director of equity trading at Wedbush Securities, said in an interview. “It has been able to shrug off a lot of negatives and not go lower than it had.”
The S&P 500’s rally erased declines in the previous four sessions and left the index 0.3 percent higher for the week. On Thursday the gauge came within 60 points of wiping out its gains for 2014 as it closed below its 100-day moving average for the first time since April. The Dow bounced back after touching its average price in the past 200 days.
Stocks jumped after RIA Novosti reported that Russia seeks a de-escalation of the conflict in Ukraine. Equities extended gains as Interfax, citing Russia’s Defense Ministry, said military exercises held since Monday near the Ukraine border are over and forces are returning to areas of permanent deployment.
The S&P 500 had dropped 3.9 percent from a record on July 24 through Thursday as Russia amassed troops along Ukraine’s border and as conflict escalated between Israel and Hamas. Equity futures retreated early Friday as President Barack Obama approved air strikes in Iraq, and rocket attacks marked the end of a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas.
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For the most part the market has been pretty resilient over the last week or so. It has been able to shrug off a lot of negatives and not go lower than it had.”
A Los Angeles-based managing director of equity trading at Wedbush Securities