International markets roundup
Market watch top headlines
A roundup of trading on major world markets:
NEW YORK - Strong earnings reports from Procter and Gamble, Halliburton and other equities propelled US markets higher, pushing the much-watched S&P 500 past the 1,500 mark for the first time in five years.
Apple shares lost another 2.4 per cent on Friday and ceded its position as the world's largest company by market value to ExxonMobil, but that had little impact on overall bullishness.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 70.65 (0.51 per cent) to 13,895.98, its best level since October 2007.
The broad-based S&P 500 continued its streak of gains, adding 8.14 (0.54 per cent) to 1,502.96; the last time it topped the 1,500 level was December 10, 2007.
The tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index jumped 19.33 (0.62 per cent) to 3,149.72.
LONDON - European stock markets advanced, with Frankfurt hitting a five-year high, as the euro rallied against the dollar following positive German data that helped to offset more woe for Britain.
Frankfurt's DAX 30 jumped 1.42 per cent to 7,857.97 points, its highest level since the 2008 global financial crisis, as data showed German business confidence rising to a seven-month high in January.
In the Paris CAC 40 climbed 0.69 per cent to reach 3,778.16 points.
London's FTSE 100 index of top companies managed a gain of 0.31 per cent to 6,284.45 points, despite official figures revealing that Britain's economy is again on the brink of recession after contracting in the final quarter of 2012.
The euro surged to an 11-month high of $US1.3479. It later eased back to $US1.3457, still up compared with $US1.3376 late on Thursday in New York.
HONG KONG - Asian markets were mixed, with Tokyo's Nikkei surging to a near three-year high on the back of a weaker yen.
The yen resumed its downtrend after a brief rally.
Tokyo surged 2.88 per cent, or 305.78 points, to 10,926.65, pushing the benchmark index to its best close since April 2010.
Sydney was 0.42 per cent higher, adding 25.0 points to 4,835.2 but Seoul closed 0.91 per cent lower, shedding 17.79 points to 1,946.69.
Hong Kong closed flat, dipping 18.47 points to 23,580.43, and Shanghai fell 0.49 per cent, or 11.30 points, to end at 2,291.30.
WELLINGTON - The index of the top 50 shares rose 9.907 points, or 0.236 per cent to 4199.821.