Closing Bell Report

Bargain hunters lifted the markets to a sharply higher close as the holiday shopping season began. The Dow jumped 181 points to 12,981 while Nasdaq soared 34 points to 2597.

On the upside

Earlier this week, (Nasdaq: BIDZ) gave COO Claudia Liu exercised options for 55,000 common shares.

Susquehanna Financial initiated coverage of eTelecare Global Solutions (Nasdaq: ETEL) with a positive rating.

Scottish Re Group (NYSE: SCT) named Samir Shah to the position of executive vice president and chief risk officer effective December 26, 2007.

On the downside

EVCI Career Colleges (Nasdaq: EVCI) narrowed third quarter losses but reported lower enrollment at its Interboro Institute.

Redwood Trust (NYSE: RWT) president and co-founder Doug Hansen will retire at the end of the year.

Nu Horizons Electronics (Nasdaq: NUHC) filed amended earnings reports for fiscal 2007 as well as amended reports for the first quarter of 2008.

In the broad market, advancing issues outpaced decliners by a margin of nearly 5 to 1 on the NYSE and by more than 7 to 2 on Nasdaq. The Russell 2000 which tracks small cap stocks climbed 15 points to 755.

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