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Stocks close higher on encouraging signs in spending and home sales
Stocks close higher on encouraging signs in spending and home sales

Encouraging U.S. economic data and a batch of corporate deals put investors in a buying mood Monday, sending stocks sharply higher. The broad rally nudged the Dow Jones industrial average back into positive territory for the year after a rough stretch for the market most of last week. Traders welcomed a government report showing that consumer spending and incomes rose in February. Another report hinted at strong start to the spring buying season. Energy stocks were among the biggest gainers, bucking a slide in the price of crude oil. Several drugmakers soared on merger news. “You had all the elements today for a positive market,” said Quincy Krosby, market strategist...

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