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Stock indexes post third week of gains

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Better earnings from GE and Morgan Stanley helped the market inch higher Friday, as major indexes closed out a third straight week of gains. GE led the 30 stocks in the Dow after it posted stronger quarterly earnings, thanks to orders from Brazil and some developing countries. This earnings season is off to a good start. Of the 67 companies in the S&P 500 that have reported, 43 have trumped analysts’ estimates. Solid results from JPMorgan Chase and others, along with encouraging news on housing and jobs, pushed the S&P 500 to its latest five-year high. Analysts forecast that S&P 500 firms will report a 4 percent increase in earnings.

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