Wall Street rebounds after 5-day decline

Wed Apr 11, 2012 12:32pm EDT
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By Angela Moon

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Stocks rose on Wednesday, bouncing back after five days of sharp losses that pushed the S&P 500 and the Nasdaq below their key technical levels.

Sectors linked with economic growth led the way higher as their recently beaten-down prices made them attractive to bargain hunters. The S&P financial sector index rose 1.6 percent. Bank of America gained 3.5 percent to $8.84.

On Tuesday, the S&P 500 closed below its 50-day moving average for the first time since December, and the level provided technical resistance in Wednesday's rebound.

The S&P's 50-day moving average is now near 1,373, close to today's session high.

"If you look at the factors that pushed us lower in the past five days - concerns about the earnings season and the European financial system weakening again - those factors seem to have abated," said Eric Kuby, chief investment officer of North Star Investment Management Corp in Chicago.

Alcoa Inc shares rose 7.7 percent to $10.03 a day after the Dow component reported a first-quarter profit instead of a loss that Wall Street was expecting, easing concerns about a weak earnings season.

The Dow Jones industrial average was up 94.53 points, or 0.74 percent, at 12,810.77. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 11.68 points, or 0.86 percent, at 1,370.27. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 29.10 points, or 0.97 percent, at 3,020.32.

Tuesday marked the S&P 500's largest daily percentage in four months. Investors will evaluate if the slide presents an opportunity for those who missed the market's gains in the first three months of the year.   Continued...

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange April 11, 2012. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid