Another week of high-octane drama marked by sharp swings ended well for major stock proxies. News from Washington had a lot to do with the down and up action, which seemingly left the market well positioned for November. A strong rally greeted investors on Monday after the Bush administration nominated Ben Bernanke for the job of Federal Reserve chairman to replace Alan Greenspan. An even stronger rally finished the week Friday as the Dow Jones Industrial Average advanced 172.82 points, or 1.7%, to 10,402.77. The S&P 500 rose 19.51 points, or 1.7%, to 1198.41 and the Nasdaq Composite gained 26.07 points, or 1.26%, to 2089.88. In a sign of newfound optimism, Microsoft ( MSFT), whose results and guidance disappointed Thursday after the close, gained 2.7%. Energy shares were also rallying, even as crude oil prices dropped, after Chevron ( CVX) posted strong earnings. Gateway ( GTW) gained 5.5% after posting better-than-expected revenue for the third quarter. But between the big gains Monday and Friday, there was a lack of follow-through and at times severe selling pressure amid concerns about politics and disappointment over quarterly results and/or guidance from firms such as Amazon.com ( AMZN), Exxon Mobil ( XOM), Texas Instruments ( TXN) and Boeing ( BA). Throughout October and earning season, the stock market has been trying to find catalysts for a traditional year-end rally. But that's so far been mired in uncertainty about the economy, inflation and fourth-quarter profits. Consumer confidence, as seen Tuesday in the Conference Board's October survey, remains gloomy after the hurricane-induced energy spike and ahead of what's expected to be a costly heating season. Adding to the nervousness this week was mounting trouble for the Bush administration: On Thursday, there was news that Harriet Miers withdrew her nomination to the Supreme Court. On Friday, a special prosecutor unsealed a five-count indictment charging Vice President Dick Cheney's chief of staff, Lewis Libby, with lying to the federal grand jury probing the Valerie Plame affair.