NEW YORK — U.S. stocks gained Monday, pushing the market to record levels, as investors assessed corporate earnings. Stocks also got a lift from a report that showed factory orders rose in March for the first time since last summer.
A promise by China's leaders to shore up growth and hopes of progress in Greece's bailout talks with its creditors helped global stocks rally.
KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 10 points, or 0.5 percent, to 2,118 as of 11:07 a.m. Eastern.
The index rose as high as 2121 in early trading, above its record at a record high of 2,117 on April 24. The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 71 points, or 0.4 percent, to 18,095. The Nasdaq composite gained 21 points, or 0.4 percent, to 5,027.
EARNINGS STANDOUTS: Cognizant Technology Solutions, a technology consulting business, was the biggest gainer in the S&P 500 after it reported earnings that beat the expectations of Wall Street analysts and raised its earnings and sales outlook for the year. The stock jumped $5.20, or 8.8 percent, to $63.25 after it posted earnings that beat the expectations of Wall Street analysts.
Tyson Foods was another company that climbed after reporting solid earnings. The company's stock rose 91 cents, or 2.2 percent, to $41.39 in early trading.
MANUFACTURING COMEBACK? Orders to U.S. factories rose in March for the first time since last July, breaking a long stretch of weakness in manufacturing. Orders increased 2.1 percent following seven monthly declines, the Commerce Department reported Monday. Also, orders in a key category that tracks business investment plans eked out a 0.1 percent rise. It was the first advance in the category since last August.
EUROPE'S DAY: France's CAC-40 rose 0.9 percent to 5,090 and Germany's DAX added 1.6 percent to 11,637. U.K. markets were closed for a public holiday.
GREECE PROGRESS: Greece made progress with its creditors over the weekend on how to stave off bankruptcy, despite complaints in Athens that the International Monetary Fund is pushing the cash-strapped country too hard to implement labor reforms.
Greece must come up with a series of economic reforms and budget measures that are acceptable to creditors in order to secure the remaining money in its bailout fund. Without that money, Greece may run out of cash and decide to leave the euro.
CHINA SLOWDOWN: The Communist Party's Politburo met last week and promised "forceful" measures to support economic growth, which slumped to 7 percent in the first quarter, the slowest since the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis. The party's leadership called for increasing investment and streamlining the flow of money through the financial system.
ENERGY: Benchmark U.S. crude oil lost 31 cents to $58.84 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
BONDS AND CURRENCIES: The price of the 10-year Treasury note edged higher. The yield dropped to 2.11 percent from 2.12 percent on Friday. The euro gave up some of its recent gains, falling to $1.1162 from $1.1192. The dollar fell to 120.19 yen from 120.28 yen.