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Retail sales data lifts stocks to gains

A day of broad swings in the stock market ended with modest gains Tuesday as investors balanced strong retail sales with Europe's lingering debt crisis.

The Dow Jones industrial average gained 17.18 points, or 0.14 percent, to 12,096.16, while the Standard & Poor's 500 index gained 6.03, or 0.48 percent, to 1,257.81 and the Nasdaq added 28.98, or 1.09 percent, to 2,686.20.

Americans spent more on autos, electronics and building supplies in October, raising retail sales for a fifth straight month. Sales increased 0.5 percent from the previous month, a faster rate than was expected.

The retail sales report helped the U.S. stock market "show a certain degree of resilience in the wake of the negative headlines out of Europe," said Todd Salamone, a director at Schaeffer's Investment Research. -- AP

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