All 10 industry groups in the S&P 500 index rose Tuesday, led by a 1.7 percent increase in banks and insurers. Financial stocks are up the most in the past month, 6.1 percent.
Bank of America climbed to its highest in more than two years. The stock rose 36 cents, or 2.8 percent, to $13.34. JPMorgan rose 56 cents, or 1.1 percent, to $50.23.
The Nasdaq composite index rose 23.82 points, or 0.7 percent, to 3,462.61.
The Dow has risen 16.1 percent this year, the S&P 500 index 15.7 percent.
BIG MOVERS IN STOCKS:
â¿¿ Sony's U.S.-listed shares jumped 10 percent after hedge fund manager Daniel Loeb called for the company to sell part of its entertainment business and use the money to shore up its struggling electronics business. The stock rose $1.87 to $20.76.
In government bond trading, the price of the 10-year Treasury note fell and its yield rose to 1.97 percent from 1.92 percent late Monday, as investors shifted money out of bonds and into riskier assets like stocks. It's the highest level for the yield since mid-March.
The yield on the note hit a low for the year of 1.63 percent on May 1. It began surging two days later after the government reported a strong increase in hiring over the past three months.
The yen weakened against the dollar. One dollar bought 102.24 Japanese yen as of late Tuesday, up from 101.93 yen late Monday. The dollar surged above 100 yen last week for the first time in four years. Japan's currency has been falling as the country's central bank floods the Japanese economy with cash in an effort to revive it from a two-decade slump. The euro edged down to $1.294 from $1.297.
The strengthening dollar weighed on commodities. When the dollar rises, it makes dollar-denominated commodities like crude oil more expensive to investors using other currencies, like yen and euros. That tends to decrease demand for those goods, driving their prices lower.