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Stocks Surge on Strength in Financials, Tech

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stocks rose Monday, led by strength in the technology and financial sectors, as Wall Street looked past continued uncertainty in Greece and contentious budget talks in Washington.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average finished up 109 points, or 0.9%, at 12,044. The S&P 500 gained 12 points, or 0.9%, at 1280, and the Nasdaq Composite rose 36 points, or 1.3%, at 2688.

New global bank rules stoked optimism about the banks as the restrictions were generally less burdensome than expected, although capital requirements unsurprisingly are increasing .

Breadth within the Dow was positive with 26 of the 30 components moving higher, led by Bank of America (BAC) and Microsoft (MSFT). DuPont (DD), Walmart (WMT), Merck (MRK - Get Report) and Kraft Foods (KFT) were the Dow's only laggards.

Greece's parliament started a three-day debate over austerity measures needed before the debt-laden country can qualify for additional aid. Ahead of an official vote Wednesday, the euro was strengthening 0.6% against the dollar, which was down 0.3% against a basket of currencies.

In Washington, President Obama and Senate leaders met to discuss the U.S. deficit. Negotiations led by Vice President Joe Biden fell apart late last week after House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl refused to accept any tax increases.

"Event news is influencing the market day in and day out," said James Paulsen, chief investment strategist at Wells Capital Management. "It's about finding a bottom in lieu of earnings season reports."

"The present market is at the point where there is increasing pressure to start anticipating that some sort of a bottom is near," said RealMoney Contributor Rev Shark in a blog post earlier this morning. "We have been in a downtrend for nearly two months now, we have some support around the 200-day simple moving average and we have the end of the quarter this week and the start of earnings season soon."

In economic news, tepid growth in wages and a stall in personal spending disappointed investors. According to the Commerce Department's latest report, personal income rose only 0.3% in May and spending remained unchanged . Taking into account inflation, wages didn't budge and spending dropped slightly.

There was also discouraging regional manufacturing news from Dallas. Business activity in the Dallas region dropped to a reading of -17.5 in June , down from May's level of 10.1.

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MMM $168.65 0.00%
MRK $58.54 0.00%
AAPL $128.46 0.00%
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