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Stocks Rebounding Following Two-Day Sell-Off - U.S. Commentary

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Stocks moved sharply higher at the start of trading on Friday following the sell-off seen over the course of the two previous sessions. The major averages have given back some ground since the open but remain firmly positive.

Currently, the major averages are all posting notable gains, although the Nasdaq is outperforming its counterparts. While the Nasdaq is up 146.02 points or 2 percent at 7,475.08, the Dow is up 231.25 points or 0.9 percent at 25,284.08 and the S&P 500 is up 34.59 points or 1.3 percent at 2,762.96.

Bargain hunting contributed to the initial strength on Wall Street, with the major averages bouncing off the multi-month closing lows set on Thursday.

The rebound also came on the heels of strength in the overseas markets, which moved higher as strong Chinese trade data helped eased concerns over slowing global growth.

Figures from China's customs administration showed Chinese exports logged double-digit annual growth in September despite escalating trade tensions with the U.S.

Additionally, top White House economic adviser Larry Kudlow told reporters a meeting between President Donald Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping at a multilateral summit in November is "under discussion."

On the U.S. economic front, the Labor Department released a report showing a much bigger than expected increase in U.S. import prices in the month of September.

The Labor Department said import prices climbed by 0.5 percent in September after falling by a revised 0.4 percent in August. Economists had expected import prices to rise by 0.2 percent.

Meanwhile, the report said export prices came in unchanged in September after slipping by a revised 0.2 percent in August. Export prices had also been expected to increase by 0.2 percent.

A separate report from the University of Michigan unexpected showed a modest decrease in consumer sentiment in the month of October.

The preliminary report showed the consumer sentiment index dipped to 99.0 in October from the final September reading of 100.1. The drop surprised economists, who had expected the index to inch up to 100.4.

Retail stocks have helped to lead the rebound on Wall Street, with the Dow Jones Retail Index jumping by 2.5 percent after ending Thursday's trading at a three-month closing low. Online retail giant Amazon (AMZN) is posting a standout gain.

Computer hardware, biotechnology, and semiconductor stocks are also seeing considerable strength, contributing to the sharp jump by the tech-heavy Nasdaq.

Most of the other major sectors have also moved back to the upside, while gold stocks are pulling back after bucking the downtrend in the two previous sessions.

In overseas trading, stock markets across the Asia-Pacific region rebounded on Friday following recent weakness. Japan's Nikkei 225 Index rose by 0.5 percent, while Hong Kong's Hang Seng Index surged up by 2.1 percent.

European stocks have pulled back off their best levels but continue to see modest strength on the day. While the German DAX Index is up by 0.2 percent, the French CAC 40 Index and the U.K.'s FTSE 100 Index are both up by 0.3 percent.

In the bond market, treasuries are giving back ground after moving notably higher in the previous session. As a result, the yield on the benchmark ten-year note, which moves opposite of its price, is up by 2.6 basis points at 3.159 percent.

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