Stocks Soar, but Consumers' Mood Goes Into Tailspin

Dow Jumps 10.9%; Confidence Index Hits Record-Low 38

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LOS ANGELES -- Consumers couldn't be more depressed. And stock traders today could hardly be happier.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average surged 889 points or 10.9% to close at 9,065, its highest close in a week. This marked the second-biggest one-day percentage gain since the Great Depression, just behind Oct. 13's 11.1% jump; and the second-largest point gain in history, behind Oct. 13's 936 points.

Confidence deflated
Traders shook off a distressing report from the Conference Board, which said the Consumer Confidence Index in October tumbled to 38.0, the lowest point since the index began in 1967. The previous low: 43.2 in December 1974, near the nadir of a deep recession.

U.S. stocks rallied following a sharp rebound in Asian and European markets. The turnabout came after the Dow Oct. 27 slumped to its lowest close since April 2003.

The Standard & Poor's 500 jumped 10.8%. The Ad Age/Bloomberg AdMarket 50 increased 10.2%. Click here to see current AdMarket prices.

Interpublic jumps 35%
The AdMarket's runaway winner: Interpublic Group of Cos., which surged 35% to $5.54 after it reported stronger-than-expected revenue and income for the third quarter. That was Interpublic's biggest one-day percentage gain on record, according to Ad Age's review of trading data back to the early '70s.

Interpublic yesterday bottomed at $3.96, its lowest point since December 1988. Interpublic's market cap rebounded today to $2.6 billion, up from $1.95 billion Oct. 27.

Other big AdMarket gainers, all from near 52-week lows: Comcast Corp. (up 24.5%); Sears Holdings Corp. (up 17.8%); News Corp. (up 17.5%); Washington Post Co. (up 15.1%).

No AdMarket 50 stocks fell. Among the smallest gains: Anheuser-Busch Cos. (up 2.8%) and Omnicom Group (up 4.3%).
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