Wall Street ended the week higher on Friday as reports on inflation and improving retail sales created a brighter economic picture, and strong quarterly earnings at General Electric bolstered the gains. Nonetheless, the major indexes finished lower for the week.

Stocks rose after the Labor Department said its core consumer price index grew just 0.1 percent in September, a sign that higher prices have so far been limited to the energy sector. Accounting for energy and food, which are excluded from core inflation, the index rose 1.2 percent.

The Commerce Department said retail sales rose 0.2 percent in September after declining 1.9 percent the month before. Not counting auto sales, which slumped after summertime incentives expired, retail sales jumped 1.1 percent, compared with economists' prediction of 0.8 percent.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 70.75, or 0.69 percent, to 10,287.34.

Broader stock indicators also finished higher. The Standard & Poor's 500-stock index rose 9.73, or 0.83 percent, to 1186.57, and the Nasdaq composite index rose 17.61, or 0.86 percent, to 2064.83.

Bonds continued their recent decline, with the yield on the 10-year Treasury note climbing to 4.48 percent, from 4.47 percent on Thursday. The dollar was mixed against most major currencies, while gold prices fell.

For the week, the Dow lost 0.05 percent, the S&P 500 slid 0.78 percent and the Nasdaq dropped 1.22 percent.

Oil prices fell on indications of weak U.S. gasoline demand and reports that more Gulf Coast refineries are coming back on line after being shut down by hurricanes Katrina and Rita. A barrel of light crude fell 45 cents, to $62.63, on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

Bloomberg News contributed to this report.


General Electric rose 32 cents, to $34.34. GE's third-quarter profit was up 15 percent despite losses from Gulf Coast hurricanes.

UnitedHealth Group, one of the nation's biggest health insurers, rose $2.22, to $56.42. Third-quarter profit was up 21 percent.

Ford Motor lost 38 cents, to $8.61. Citigroup analyst Jon Rogers cut Ford to "sell" from "hold," citing pessimism about the company's sales this month, lower financing earnings and employee benefit costs.

Boston Scientific fell 44 cents, to $23.86, after reporting a $269 million third-quarter loss.

BB&T added $1.21, to $39.33, after a strong earnings report.


New York Stock Exchange composite index rose 69.47, to 7362.59.

American Stock Exchange index rose 25.00, to 1619.79.

Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks rose 9.87, to 633.15.


NYSE: 2.2 billion shares, down from 2.35 billion on Thursday. Advancers outnumbered decliners 2 to 1.

Nasdaq: 1.56 billion shares, down from 1.8 billion. Advancers outnumbered decliners 9 to 4.


Crude oil for November delivery: $62.63, down 45 cents.

Gold for current delivery: $469.20 a troy ounce, down from $471.10 on Thursday.