Stocks Open Higher on European Debt Talk Optimism; Dow Jumps 1.2%, Nasdaq Up 1.1%

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Stocks are higher as Wall Street turns cautiously optimistic that European talks at a planned weekend summit will yield a solution to the continent's problems, while solid earnings from McDonald's Corp. ( MCD ) and General Electric ( GE ) are providing domestic support. There are no economic reports scheduled for release, though earnings news continues to flow.

European markets are firmer and Asian markets closed little changed on the day. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is up more than 100 points, or 1.21% out of the gate, followed by the S&P 500, up 1.12% and the Nasdaq Composite Index, up 1%. So far in October, the Dow is up 5.8%, the S&P 7.4% and the Nasdaq 7.6%.

Stocks have been choppy all week as European chatter shared the stage with earnings reports. Stocks fell Thursday amid reports the summit meeting could be postponed due to disagreements between Berlin and Paris over how to leverage the euro-zone bailout fund. Equities later recovered after French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angela Merkel confirmed the summit would go ahead on Sunday and would be followed by a second meeting no later than Wednesday.


In earnings news, McDonald's jumped out of the gate to trade up 2.6%. The company reports Q3 revenue of $7.16 bln, better than the analyst consensus of $7.02 bln on Thomson Reuters. EPS was $1.45, vs. expectations of $1.43 per share. The company expects October sales to be up 4% to 5%. Industrial and financial conglomerate General Electric Co. said its net income rose 18 as its lending business continued to recover. Net income at software maker Microsoft Corp. ( MSFT ) rose 6%,

Oil is rising with equities. The December contract is up $1.82 at $87.89. December gold is also rallying up $33.40 at $1646.30 an ounce.



The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of The NASDAQ OMX Group, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Commodities

Referenced Stocks: GE , MCD , MSFT

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