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Stocks climb as manufacturing, spending increase

Stock indexes rose Monday as a flurry of reports bolstered hopes that the economy is recovering.The stronger reports on manufacturing activity and personal incomes helped shore up the market’s sentiment after three straight losing weeks that left stocks with a loss for January.

Investors were already becoming more optimistic thanks to news on Friday that the economy grew at the fastest pace in six years in the final three months of 2009.

Major indicators started higher and kept the momentum up through midday trading. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 80 points, and other indexes logged similar gains. Energy stocks led the market higher following a strong earnings report from Exxon Mobil.

U.S. manufacturing activity grew for a sixth straight month in January to the strongest level since August 2004, according to the Institute for Supply Management. The trade group said factories increased production as customers replenished inventories.


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