NEW YORK - Stocks are closing sharply higher after the European Central Bank president vowed to "do whatever it takes" to keep the continent's monetary union intact.
The Dow Jones industrial average jumped 212 points, or 1.7 percent, to 12,888 Thursday, following big gains in European markets. Benchmark stock indexes surged 6 percent in Spain and Italy and 4 percent in France.
The broader the Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 22 points to 1,360. It was the S&P's first gain in five days. The Nasdaq composite index rose 39 points to 2,893, despite more disappointing news from technology companies including the online game maker Zynga.
Rising stocks outpaced losing ones by three to one on the New York Stock Exchange. Volume was heavy at 4.4 billion shares.
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