(May 3): U.S. stocks rose on Monday, rebounding from losses last week, as financials gained with Berkshire Hathaway and weakness in the dollar eased worries about earnings for multinationals.
The Nasdaq snapped a seven-session losing streak, though Apple fell for an eighth straight session, its longest run of losses since mid-1998.
Gains in consumer shares also lifted stocks, which on Friday had posted their largest weekly drop in more than two months. Amazon shares jumped 3.7 percent to $683.85, giving the S&P 500 and Nasdaq their biggest boosts, while both the consumer discretionary sector and staples gained more than 1 percent each.
The dollar index fell 0.5 percent and is down 6.1 percent for the year so far, a trend that should bode well for U.S. companies with a lot of overseas sales.
"It seems like the weak dollar superseded everything today, and we've got people coming in to buy stocks," said Bucky Hellwig, senior vice president at BB&T Wealth Management in Birmingham, Alabama. "The weaker dollar helps companies that do business abroad."
While first-quarter earnings from S&P 500 companies have mostly beaten analysts' expectations, they are still estimated down 5.7 percent from a year ago, according to Thomson Reuters data.
Berkshire Hathaway, was up 0.6 percent following its annual shareholder meeting on Saturday, while the financial sector climbed 1.1 percent.
The Dow Jones industrial average closed up 117.52 points, or 0.66 percent, to 17,891.16, the S&P 500 gained 16.13 points, or 0.78 percent, to 2,081.43 and the Nasdaq Composite added 42.24 points, or 0.88 percent, to 4,817.59.
Recovering oil prices and an accommodative Federal Reserve have helped the S&P 500 rise roughly 14 percent since mid-February.
U.S. manufacturing activity rose for the second straight month in April, but at a slightly slower pace. The Institute for Supply Management (ISM) said its index of national factory activity slipped to 50.8 last month from 51.8 in March.
A report from the Commerce Department showed construction spending rose to an 8-1/2-year high in March.
Baker Hughes shares fell 2 percent to $47.40 after scrapping a deal to merge with larger rival Halliburton. Halliburton rose 1.8 percent to $42.05.
Apollo Education shares jumped 12.4 percent to $8.77 after a group of investors raised their offer to $1.14 billion to buy the for-profit education provider.
About 7.1 billion shares changed hands on U.S. exchanges, even with the daily average for the past 20 trading days, according to Thomson Reuters data.
NYSE advancing issues outnumbered decliners 1,903 to 1,109, for a 1.72-to-1 ratio on the upside; on the Nasdaq, 1,674 issues rose and 1,165 fell for a 1.44-to-1 ratio favoring advancers.
The S&P 500 posted 15 new 52-week highs and 3 new lows; the Nasdaq recorded 62 new highs and 35 new lows.