Stocks finished a turbulent week with solid gains today as new data showing slower-than-expected economic growth helped calm fears about rising inflation and higher interest rates.
Investors also jumped at the chance to pick up shares at lower prices because of the market's slump this week.
After tumbling 235 points Thursday, its worst drop in eight months, the Dow Jones industrial average today rose 92.81 points, or 0.9 percent, to close at 10,559.74. The blue-chip barometer was up as much as 122 points in afternoon trading.
Broader indexes also were higher. The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index rose 20.43, to 1301.84, and the technology-heavy Nasdaq composite index rose 51.37, to 2470.52.
The Dow seesawed all week with declines of more than 1 percent on Monday and Tuesday, then staged a rebound of more than 1 percent on Wednesday but tumbled 2.2 percent Thursday. With today's gain, the average ended the week down 269.54 points, or 2.5 percent.
For all of May, the Dow was 2.1 percent lower, its steepest monthly decline of the year. But it was up 15 percent for the first five months of 1999, a much stronger performance than many analysts had expected when the year began.
Trading was light today as market professionals eased into the three-day holiday weekend. U.S. financial markets will be closed Monday in observance of Memorial Day.
The low volume and broad-based gains provided an antidote to the week's volatility on Wall Street. The market swung amid persistent fears that any signs of rising inflation will prompt the Federal Reserve to raise short-term interest rates.
But some of the fears about rising inflation and interest rates were tempered after the Purchasing Management Association of Chicago today reported a greater-than-expected drop in its business activity index.
Bargain-hunters also helped lift stocks. Microsoft rose 2-5/16, to 80-11/16, and Amazon.com surged 4-3/16, to 118 3/4.
"The tech stocks and Internet stocks look like they've reached some sort of bottom," said Barry Hyman, senior equity analyst at Ehrenkrantz King Nussbaum.
Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones by 2 to 1 on the New York Stock Exchange, where volume totaled 657.8 million shares, down from 829.7 million Thursday.
The NYSE composite index rose 8.24, to 622.26; the American Stock Exchange composite index gained 4.35, to 778.74; and the Russell 2000 index of smaller companies advanced 5.76, to 438.68.