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Stock Market Story: Nov. 23

Tickers in this article: RIMM ^DJI ^GSPC TGT WMT ^IXIC

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The major U.S. equity averages opened Friday's half-session higher as shoppers sought deals on "Black Friday," the traditional kick-off of the holiday shopping season.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average was rising nearly 70 points, or 0.54%, at 12,907. The blue-chip index, which has bounced nearly 2% so far this week, begins the day up roughly 5% in 2012.

The entire Dow was in the green, led by Hewlett-Packard(HPQ) , McDonald's(MCD) , and Microsoft(MSFT) .

The S&P 500 was gaining more than 7 points, or 0.54%, at 1399, while the Nasdaq was up close to 20 points, or 0.68%, at 2947.

The strongest sectors in the broad market were conglomerates, consumer non-cyclicals, and technology.

The FTSE 100 in London was rising 0.45% on Friday, while the DAX in Germany was up 0.61%. A survey released Friday found that German business confidence rose unexpectedly in November after six straight monthly declines.

Hong Kong's Hang Seng index on Friday closed with a 0.8% gain while China's benchmark index also ended higher. China's manufacturing expanded for the first time in 13 months in November, helping to boost global stocks on Thursday.

The U.S. economic calendar is empty.

Gold for December delivery was up $4.10 at $1,732.30 an ounce at the Comex division of the New York Mercantile Exchange, while January crude oil contracts were up 30 cents at $87.68.

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The benchmark 10-year Treasury was trading down 1/32, lifting the yield to 1.690%. The dollar was down 0.31%, according to the U.S. dollar index.

In corporate news, retailers such as Wal-Mart (WMT) and Target(TGT) were in focus on Black Friday, so named because the day is traditionally when retailers turn a profit for the year. Many stores opened Thanksgiving night.

Wal-Mart shares were rising 0.22%, while Target's stock were advancing 0.33%. The SPDR S&P Retail ETF(XRT) was gaining 0.56%.

A standout within technology was Research In Motion (RIMM) , whose shares were soaring nearly 12% on optimism over the company's BlackBerry 10 devices. RIM confirmed earlier this month that the BlackBerry 10 technology will debut at a launch event on Jan. 30, 2013.

--Written by Michael Baron in New York.

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