U.S. stocks briefly pared losses on Friday after data showed U.S. consumer sentiment rose more than expected in the early part of May.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> was down 23.12 points, or 0.18 percent, at 12,672.80. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> was down 1.73 points, or 0.13 percent, at 1,346.92. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> was down 7.57 points, or 0.26 percent, at 2,855.47.

(Reporting by Caroline Valetkevitch; Editing by Padraic Cassidy)