Stocks gain despite GM cuts, oil |

Stocks gain despite GM cuts, oil

Associated Press

NEW YORK – Wall Street extended its November rally with modest gains Monday despite pressure from rising oil prices and a major restructuring plan at General Motors Corp.A raft of acquisition news carried some stocks higher, but volume was light and was expected to remain so ahead of Thanksgiving. There was also a muted reaction to a Conference Board report that the top economic indicators rose 0.9 percent last month, reversing an 0.8 percent decline in September.The Standard & Poor’s 500 and Nasdaq composite indexes pushed past four-year highs reached Friday as an improving economic backdrop energized the market. But many traders were awaiting indications of how retailers will fare during this year’s holiday rush, which starts Friday.”You’re going to hear a lot of banter about (retail sales) this week because consumers are such a large part of the economy,” said Art Hogan, chief market analyst for Jefferies & Co. Hogan said investors may react to early sales reports, “but it doesn’t mean a whole lot until we have the hard data.”Meanwhile, forecasters said a nearing snowstorm could hit several northeastern states by mid-week, pushing crude oil higher on renewed supply concerns. A barrel of light crude added 49 cents to $57.70 on the New York Mercantile Exchange.In late afternoon trading, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 53.95, or 0.5 percent, to 10,820.28, the index’s highest level since early March.Broader stock indicators were also higher. The S&P 500 added 6.58, or 0.53 percent, to 1,254.85, and the Nasdaq gained 14.60, or 0.66 percent, to 2,241.67. —On the Net:New York Stock Exchange: http://www.nyse.comNasdaq Stock Market:

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