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Stock indexes climb early

NEW YORK, Feb. 8 (UPI) — U.S. stock indexes climbed Friday after the U.S. Commerce Department said the U.S. trade deficit shrank $19.5 billion from 2011 to 2012.

The annual decline was pushed by a surprising trading gap of $38.5 billion in December from $48.6 billion in November. Economists had expected a drop, but only to $46 billion.

In midmorning trading Friday, the Dow Jones industrial average added 64.47 points or 0.46 percent to 14,008.52. The Dow needs to top 14,009.79 at the close to claim a fifth consecutive week of gains.

The Nasdaq composite index added 27.77 points or 0.88 percent to 3,192.90. The Standard & Poor’s 500 gained 8.05 points or 0.53 percent to 1,517.44.

The 10-year treasury note fell 7/32 to yield 1.981 percent.

Against the dollar, the euro fell to $1.3382 from Thursday’s $1.3397. The dollar fell to 92.74 yen from 93.63 yen.

In Tokyo, the Nikkei 225 index dropped 203.91 points, 1.8 percent, to 11,153.16.

Copyright 2013 United Press International, Inc. (UPI).

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