Dow Starts May Quietly, Up 44 Points

Traders have put in more of the "buy" orders that propelled the market in April to its best one-month performance in nine years.

Stocks have ended a quiet day higher Friday after investors concluded that mixed manufacturing data and earnings reports were reason enough to continue April's gains.

A private group's measure of the manufacturing industry showed a slower contraction in April than the month before. But the government said orders to U.S. factories in March fell more than expected.

The Dow is up 44 points at 8,212. The Standard & Poor's 500 index is up 5 at 878. The Nasdaq composite index is up 2 at 1,719.

Two stocks rose for every one that fell on New York Stock Exchange, where volume totaled a light 1.29 billion shares.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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