Stock Market News Today: Dow, Nasdaq Flat; Target Stock in Focus

Stocks rose on Friday, with all three major indexes pointing to weekly gains in afternoon trading.

Markets have been buoyed this week by cooling inflation and bets that the Federal Reserve can achieve a "soft landing" for the economy. The S&P 500 has risen for 12 of the last 15 sessions.

Oil prices rose, but the main US benchmark, WTI, is down 20% from its recent peak in late September, another sign that inflation pressures are easing.

In the afternoon market action:

US stock indices rose slightly. The S&P 500 rose about 0.2%.

The end of earnings season generated some big moves. Gap shares rose after good results; So did fellow retailer Ross Stores. Disappointing earnings from Applied Materials sent shares of the semiconductor equipment company tumbling.

Target shares are up more than 20% this week. The retailer recently reported better-than-expected earnings and its stock is on track for its best weekly performance since 2019.

Bond Yields Little Changedwith the 10-year Treasury yield around 4.432%.

Home construction starts in the United States increased in October. New home construction increased 1.9%, improving both single-family and multi-family construction.

European stocks rose, while Asian indices were mixed. Alibaba shares remained under pressure after e-commerce giant canceled the spin-off of its cloud arm.

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