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Technology companies drive up stocks, led by Intel

Technology and materials stocks led broad gains in the stock market Monday.

Technology and materials stocks led broad gains in the stock market Monday.

Technology stocks in the Standard and Poor's 500 index rose 1 percent after Intel Corp. increased its dividend and said it would buy back more of its stock. The company gained 1.5 percent.

Materials companies gained 1.4 percent after a report from the National Association for Business Economics showed that economists are more positive about economic growth and the job market than at any time since the start of the Great Recession.

Vulcan Materials Co., Alcoa Inc. and Sealed Air Corp. each gained more than 3 percent. Alcoa was the top-performing stock among the 30 that make up the Dow Jones industrial average.

All ten company groups that make up the Standard and Poor's 500 index rose.

The S&P 500 gained 8 points, or 0.6 percent, to 1,291 in midday trading. The Dow gained 92, or 0.8 percent, to 11,964. The Nasdaq composite rose 27, or 1 percent, to 2,716.

J.C. Penny Co. jumped 7 percent after the retailer said it would close some stores and its catalog business to reduce costs.

American Express Co., CSX Corp. and Texas Instruments Inc. are scheduled to release their results after the market closes.

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