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Dow Surges a 2nd Day to a New 5-Year High, Closes in on Record

Stocks are closing sharply higher for a second day as evidence mounts that the housing market is making a comeback. The Dow Jones industrial average jumped 175 points to 14,075, its highest close of the year. It's up nearly 300 points over the past two days, putting it within 100 points of its record high reached in October 2007.

Dow Has Its Best Close in Nearly 5 Years

Investors, encouraged by a drop in the unemployment rate, sent the Dow Jones Industrial Average to highest level in almost 5 years on Friday. And though the jobs report-inspired rally did not last, the Dow still closed up 34.79 points, at 13610.15, for its best finish since December 2007.

Stocks Fall as European Financial Crisis Deepens

Signs that Europe's debt troubles are larger than previously thought upended financial markets Friday, sending the dollar up nearly 1% and erasing the week's stock gains. Fears of a deepening financial crisis overshadowed reports that consumers are feeling more confident in the U.S. economy and that inflation remains in check.

The Dangers of Buying on Disasters

Days after Japan's devastating earthquake and tsunami, Warren Buffett and Marc Faber pronounced the country's woes a buying opportunity. A cash stampede into U.S.-based Japan exchange-traded funds followed, but these investments carry much greater risks than the average investor probably realized.