U.S. stocks gained slightly, after U.S. leading economic indicators posted solid gains on Thursday. In world economic news, European markets fell while Asian markets closed with losses. In U.S. economic news, U.S. economic activity rose in February by the largest amount in three months. The Conference board said its index of leading economic indicators increased 0.5 percent last month. Meanwhile, sales of U.S. existing homes fell slightly in February. The National Association of Realtors (NAR) reported Thursday that home re-sales declined 0.4 percent last month. The dollar rose versus the Pound, the Euro, and the Yen. Light sweet crude oil for April delivery fell to $99.38 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Gold futures fell to $1,329.40 an ounce. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 108.88, or 0.7 percent, to 16,331.05. The broader Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 11.24, or 0.6 percent, to 1,872.01. The technology-heavy Nasdaq composite index rose 11.69, or 0.3 percent, to 4,319.29.