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US stocks jump on GDP, Facebook results

US stocks on Thursday bolted higher on the strength of a solid report on US economic growth and banner results from Facebook that raised hopes about other technology giants.

NEW YORK: US stocks on Thursday bolted higher on the strength of a solid report on US economic growth and banner results from Facebook that raised hopes about other technology giants.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 109.82 points (0.70 percent) to 15,848.61.

The broad-based S&P 500 gained 19.99 points (1.13 percent) to 1,794.19, while the tech-rich Nasdaq Composite Index soared 71.69 points (1.77 percent) to 4,123.13.

Commerce Department data showed US economic growth at 3.2 percent in the fourth quarter, above the 3.0 percent projected by analysts. Analysts were particularly cheered by a 3.3 percent rise in consumer spending.

The GDP data "shows further strength," said Brent Schutte, market strategist at BMO Private Bank. "Things are getting a lot better."

Facebook helped lift the Nasdaq, rising 14.1 percent on a huge jump in earnings due to stronger advertising revenues.

The Facebook report also spurred buying in Twitter (+6.8 percent) and Google (+2.6 percent), among others.

"To me it's kind of a bounce-back from the drubbing we've had the last few days," said Schutte, alluding to the largely downward lurch of equity markets since last Thursday.

Dow member ExxonMobil fell 1.2 percent after earnings missed expectations by a penny at $1.91 per share due to lower oil and gas production and weak refining and chemical earnings in its international divisions.

3M, another Dow member, declined 1.7 percent after revenues of $7.57 billion lagged forecasts. Earnings matched expectations.

Visa advanced 1.7 percent after earnings of $2.20 per share exceeded estimates by four cents.

Internet security firm Symantec fell 7.3 percent after forecasting sales of $1.62-$1.66 billion in the upcoming quarter, on the low end of expectations.

Athletic apparel company Under Armour shot up 22.9 percent after earnings of 59 cents per share topped expectations by eight cents on strong sales increases.

Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year US Treasury inched higher to 2.69 percent from 2.68 percent, while the 30-year rose to 3.64 percent from 3.62 percent. Bond prices and yields move inversely.

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