NEW YORK -- U.S. stocks opened higher Friday as investors welcomed better-than-expected corporate results ahead of fresh data on home sales.
The Dow Jones industrial average, the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq added between 0.2% and 0.5%.
Procter & Gamble shares rose 3.6%, leading the gains on the Dow. The company, which makes a variety of household goods, topped earnings expectations and raised its outlook for earnings and share repurchases in 2013.
AT&T was also a big winner on the blue chip index. The wireless carrier's shares rose more than 1% after it beat on sales but missed on earnings.
Halliburton shares jumped 6%, making it among the best performers in the S&P 500. The company reported earnings that beat analysts' expectations, driven by strength in the company's international divisions.
A 4.4% increase in Starbucks shares also boosted the broader market. The company reported earnings late Thursday that were in line with analysts' estimates.
On the downside, shares of Hasbro were under pressure after the company said it expects full year earnings to come in below analysts' expectations, citing the "challenging growth prospects" in the toy industry.
Overall, S&P 500 companies are expected to report earnings growth of 4.45% for the last three months of 2012, according to S&P Capital IQ.
Of the 142 companies that had reported results as of Thursday evening, 66% have exceeded analysts' expectations.
Investors will also get another look at the strength of the housing recovery on Friday, with the Census Bureau set to release data on new home sales for December at 10 a.m. ET.
U.S. stocks ended Thursday mixed, with Apple weighing on the Nasdaq. The tech giant's shares fell more than 12% after it said sales in the current quarter would come in below analysts' expectations, even though earnings in the most recent quarter rose to a record $13.1 billion.
Overseas, European markets were higher in afternoon trading, with the DAX in Germany adding more than 1%. London's FTSE 100 edged higher early Friday, despite data showing the U.K. economy shrank 0.3% in the fourth quarter. The weaker-than-expected performance raised concerns that Britain could slide back into recession.
Asian markets ended mixed. Shares in Shanghai and Hong Kong fell sightly, but the Nikkei in Japan surged more than 2%. Japanese stocks have rallied as investors bet recent moves by the Bank of Japan and newly-elected prime minister Shinzo Abe will revive the nation's economy.
The dollar declined versus the euro and the British pound, but gained ground versus the Japanese yen.
Oil prices edged higher, while gold prices slipped.
The price of the 10-year Treasury slipped, pushing the yield up to 1.92% from 1.84% from late Thursday.