Small-cap stocks hovered above the bullish broader market Monday, propelled in part by Rubicon ( RBY), one of today's biggest percentage gainers overall. The Canadian gold miner rocketed 25.5% to $2.51 after discovering a new gold zone in its 60%-owned joint venture in Ontario.

Also surging was Minnesota-based Rural Cellular ( RCCC), which Bear Stearns upped to outperform after Friday's release of positive preliminary first-quarter results. Shares advanced 21% to close at $23. Colorado's Red Robin Gourmet Burgers ( RRGB) also rode high on a positive analyst call, gaining 6.6% to $41.97 on a Morgan Keegan upgrade to outperform. The analyst cited, among other things, the restaurant chain's plans to break into national TV advertising.

New deals lifted several small-cap stocks today, among them Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies Worldwide ( QTWW). The Irvine, Calif., auto-component maker jumped nearly 23% to close at $1.51 after agreeing to a joint venture with "a major Chinese automaker" to develop hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles.

NutraCea ( NTRZ) said its rice-stabilization technology will be used in one of Archer Daniels Midland's ( ADM) facilities, boosting NutraCea shares by 9.7% to $3.95. ADM lately added 3 cents to $38.04. Health-care-info technology firm Streamline Health ( STRM) closed up 7.5% at $4.59 after announcing a new client -- "one of the largest" nonprofit health-care systems in the Northeast.

K-Swiss ( KSWS) meanwhile rose on a Barron's report predicting that the apparel maker's growth strategy and debtless balance sheet could push shares up to at least $32. The California-based company closed up $1.08, or 3.9%, at $28.72. Sign-making systems developer Gerber Scientific ( GRB), based in Connecticut, agreed to buy Data Technology for an undisclosed sum. Shares closed higher by 5% at $11.43.

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