NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Stocks finished with modest gains Monday as reassurances from European leaders calmed investor concerns about Greece's financial situation. The Dow Jones Industrial Average settled up 76 points at 12,080, pulling back slightly after reaching an intraday high north of 12,095. It was the Dow's third straight positive session. The S&P 500 gained 7 points, or 0.5%, to finish at 1278, and the Nasdaq Composite ticked up 13 points, or 0.5%, to 2630. The markets were boosted after Greece's new financial minister pledged to help pass budget cuts needed for his country to receive the next installment in a €100 billion bailout package. And while
the gains were tempered by weekend news that European Union officials in Luxembourg had failed to agree on an immediate aid package for the debt-laden country, those officials did reportedly express confidence at the meeting that Greece would be able to avoid a default. "There is no shortage of fundamental negatives out there and the market has clearly been in a nasty downtrend for seven weeks now," said RealMoney contributor Rev Shark in a Monday morning blog post. "The good news is that the negative and gloomy overtones mean the market is probably oversold enough to support some sort of reflexive bounce." Trading is likely to be tepid through the beginning of the week as the market awaits this Wednesday's comments from the Federal Reserve, said Marc Pado, U.S. market strategist at Cantor Fitzgerald. "The market is also dealing with a lack of clarity regarding where we stand immediately after the end of QE2," said Pado. The FTSE in London lost 0.4%, and the DAX in Frankfurt fell 0.2% on Monday. Hong Kong's Hang Seng declined 0.4% while Japan's Nikkei added 0.03%.
Capital goods and consumer stocks led the market higher in Monday's session. Energy and financial stocks put in the weakest performance. Banks stocks moved downward after Citigroup
lowered targets and estimates for Bank of America ( BAC), Goldman Sachs ( GS) and Morgan Stanley ( MS). Within the Dow, Du Pont ( DD), Caterpillar ( CAT) and United Tech ( UTX) finished near the top, while Bank of America, JP Morgan Chase ( JPM) and Travelers ( TRV) were the biggest laggards in within the blue-chip index. Breadth was very positive as 25 of the Dow's 30 components finished higher. Of the 2.9 billion shares that traded on the New York Stock Exchange, 65% rose, while 33% declined. 1.6 million shares changed hands on the Nasdaq. Shares of Harbin Electric ( HRBN) soared 60% to $13.35 after the company's CEO agreed to take the China-based electric motor maker private for $750 million. The prospects of the deal, which was originally announced in October 2010, had been questioned of late by Citron Research, which is known to short the stocks it writes about. Investors remained wary as Harbin's stock price stopped far short of the $24 per share offer price. Also in corporate deals news, PNC Financial Services ( PNC) agreed to buy the U.S. retail banking unit of Royal Bank of Canada ( RY) at a $112 million discount to the book value of Royal Bank's U.S. retail operations. Royal Bank's stock finished up 0.2% at $55.65, while shares of PNC lost 2% to $56.66. Qatar Airways announced plans to order six Boeing ( BA) 777 jets with a value of $1.7 billion. Boeing's stock slipped 0.5% to $74.52. Japanese electronics company Panasonic ( PC) said it expects a fiscal 2012 profit of 30 billion yen ($373.7 million), a decrease of nearly 60% from the prior year because of the March 11 earthquake and tsunami. Shares lost 0.9% to $11.61. The August crude oil contract shed 39 cents to trade at $93.79 a barrel. Gold for August delivery stayed about flat at $1,542 an ounce. The benchmark 10-year Treasury fell 3/32, lifting the yield to 2.96%. The dollar strengthened against a basket of currencies, with the dollar index up by 0.05%. No economic reports were released during today's trading session. . -- Written by Chao Deng and Melinda Peer in New York.