NEW YORK, Oct. 15 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks finished higher on Friday, fueled by strong earnings' reports and an unexpected increase of the nation's retail sales.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average increased 382.20 points, or 1.09 percent, to 35,294.76. The S&P 500 was up 33.11 points, or 0.75 percent, to 4,471.37. The Nasdaq Composite Index rose 73.91 points, or 0.50 percent, to 14,897.34.
Eight of the 11 primary S&P 500 sectors ended in green, with consumer discretionary and financials up 1.76 percent and 1.51 percent, respectively, leading the gainers. Utilities slipped 0.23 percent, the worst-performing group.
Goldman Sachs posted third-quarter results on Friday that exceeded analysts' expectations, sending the stock up 3.8 percent.
Other financial giants including JPMorgan, Bank of America, Morgan Stanley and Citigroup also reported better-than-anticipated earnings earlier this week.
On the economic front, U.S. retail sales climbed 0.7 percent in September after a 0.9-percent gain in August, the Department of Commerce reported on Friday. Economists polled by Dow Jones were expecting a 0.2-percent decline.
"September data was lifted by high inflation and fear of COVID shifting demand from services to goods," Will Compernolle, senior economist at FHN Financial, said Friday in a note.
"The personal spending report in two weeks will tell us how much that inflation and demand shift distorted the actual strength of consumer spending in September," Compernolle added.
U.S.-listed Chinese companies traded mostly higher on Friday with eight of the top 10 stocks by weight in the S&P U.S. Listed China 50 index ending the day on an upbeat note.