NEW YORK, Feb. 14 (Xinhua) -- U.S. stocks closed higher on Friday, ending the week in positive territory as investors weighed the country's upbeat consumer sentiment index against an unexpected shrinking of its industrial production.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average surged 126.80 points, or 0.79 percent, to 16,154.39. The S&P 500 rose 8.80 points, or 0.48 percent, to 1,838.63. The Nasdaq Composite Index edged up 3.35 points, or 0.08 percent, to 4,244.02.
The tech-rich Nasdaq rose for its seventh consecutive trading, jumping to its highest in about 13.5 years, while the blue-chip Dow and the broader S&P 500 went up for the sixth time in the seven sessions.
All the three indices posted their best week in the year, with both the Dow and the S&P 500 advancing 2.3 percent, and the Nasdaq up 2.9 percent.
The market initially fell after the Federal Reserve reported before the opening bell that U.S. industrial production decreased 0.3 percent in January after rising 0.3 percent in December. It was the largest decline since May 2009.
Meanwhile, manufacturing output fell 0.8 percent in January, partly because of the severe weather that curtailed production in some regions of the country, it added.
However, the market regained momentum soon, moving higher, after a report showed that the preliminary reading of the Reuters/ University of Michigan's consumer sentiment index for February stood at 81.2, surpassing the market consensus of 80.0, as a weather-related drop in current conditions is offset by an advance in expectations.
Among other data, U.S. import prices rose for the second consecutive month in January, advancing 0.1 percent, the Labor Department said Friday. Meanwhile, U.S. export prices also rose for the month, rising 0.2 percent.
Overseas, European stocks closed broadly higher Friday as data showed that the eurozone gross domestic product increased at a more-than-expected rate of 0.3 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013, also providing a boost to the U.S. market.
Moreover, most stocks in Asia ended in positive territory as Chinese inflation data in January came out calm.
In corporate news, shares of American International Group dipped 1.25 percent to 48.97 U.S. dollars, though the insurance giant late Thursday released an encouraging earnings report for the fourth quarter while raising its quarterly dividend.
The CBOE Volatility Index, widely considered as a fear gauge of the market, dropped 4.03 percent to 13.57.
In other markets, U.S. oil price was little changed Friday on mixed economic data. Light, sweet crude for March delivery moved down 5 cents to settle at 100.3 dollars a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, while Brent crude for April delivery gained 56 cents to close at 109.08 dollars a barrel.
Gold futures on the COMEX division of the New York Mercantile Exchange rose for eight sessions in a line on soft dollar Friday, with the most active gold contract for April delivery up 18.5 dollars to settle at 1,318.6 dollars per ounce.
The U.S. dollar continued to lose momentum against major currencies Friday, as the country's unexpected drop in industrial production weighed on the currency.
In late New York trading, the euro rose to 1.3696 dollars from 1.3675 dollars of the previous session, and the British pound went up to 1.6743 dollars from 1.6655 dollars.