Story updated with market closing information.

NEW YORK (

TheStreet

) --

Bank of America

(BAC) - Get Bank of America Corp Report

led the banking sector's rise on Monday, with shares soaring over 8% to close at $8.39.

The nation's largest bank announced it would sell part of its stake in

China Construction Bank

to a group of private investors for $8.3 billion in cash, for an after-tax profit of $3.3 billion. After the sale, Bank of America will still have a 5% stake in China Construction Bank.

Bank of America CEO Brian Moynihan estimated that during August, the company had raised "approximately" $5.8 billion in additional Tier 1 capital through "non-core asset sales" and other actions.

The

broad indexes showed strong gains

, as investors expressed relief that the damage from Hurricane Irene was less than expected. The

KBW Bank Index

(I:BKX)

climbed 4.5% to close at 39.84, with all 24 index components rising.

Regions Financial

(RF) - Get Regions Financial Corporation Report

was up 8% to close at $4.36.

Shares of

Zions Bancorporation

(ZION) - Get Zions Bancorporation (ZION) Report

rose over 6% to close at $17.26.

Large U.S. banks seeing 5% gains for Monday's session included

BB&T

(BBT) - Get BB&T Corporation Report

, which closed at $21.74;

Citigroup

(C) - Get Citigroup Inc. Report

, closing at $31.29;

Comerica

(CMA) - Get Comerica Incorporated Report

, at $25.22;

TheStreet Recommends

Fifth Third Bancorp

(FITB) - Get Fifth Third Bancorp Report

, at $10.518;

First Niagara Financial Group

(FNFG)

, at $10.65;

Huntington Bancshares

(HBAN) - Get Huntington Bancshares Incorporated (HBAN) Report

, at $5.12;

KeyCorp

(KEY) - Get KeyCorp (KEY) Report

, at $6.74;

PNC Financial Services

(PNC) - Get PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. Report

, at $49.31; and

SunTrust

(STI) - Get SunTrust Banks, Inc. Report

, which closed at $19.82.

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--

Written by Philip van Doorn in Jupiter, Fla.

To contact the writer, click here:

Philip van Doorn

.

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.

Philip W. van Doorn is a member of TheStreet's banking and finance team, commenting on industry and regulatory trends. He previously served as the senior analyst for TheStreet.com Ratings, responsible for assigning financial strength ratings to banks and savings and loan institutions. Mr. van Doorn previously served as a loan operations officer at Riverside National Bank in Fort Pierce, Fla., and as a credit analyst at the Federal Home Loan Bank of New York, where he monitored banks in New York, New Jersey and Puerto Rico. Mr. van Doorn has additional experience in the mutual fund and computer software industries. He holds a bachelor of science in business administration from Long Island University.