U.S. Markets closed

China growth, earnings push stocks mostly higher

Trader F. Hill Creekmore works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Wednesday, Oct. 9, 2013. News of a rebound in China's economy shored up markets on Friday, Oct. 18, 2013 at the end of what has been a volatile week that saw the U.S. veer dangerously close to a debt default. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

NEW YORK (AP) -- Stronger economic growth in China and a pickup in U.S. corporate earnings are sending the stock market mostly higher in early trading.

General Electric, Morgan Stanley and Baker Hughes all rose early Friday after reporting higher earnings that financial analysts were expecting.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index was up six points, or 0.3 percent, at 1,739 shortly after trading began Friday. The S&P 500 is pushing further into record territory after closing at an all-time high Thursday.

The Dow Jones industrial average of 30 major stocks edged down three points, or 0.02 percent, to 15,368.

The Nasdaq composite rose 23 points, or 0.6 percent, to 3,887 points.

China's economy grew 7.8 percent in the three months ending in September.