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Monday, 26 September 2011 | 21:00

DJ30 PointChange: +272.38 Level: 11043.86 NASDAQ PointChange: +33.46 Level: 2516.69 NQ100 PercentChange: +1.2 R2K PercentChange: +2.0 SP400 PercentChange: +2.0 SP500 PointChange: +26.52 Level: 1162.95

[BRIEFING.COM] Stocks scored their strongest single-session surge in more than two weeks amid hopes that a plan to stabilize Europe's flagging financial system is in the works. Banks and other financial issues led the advance.

In the absence of any meaningful data or market-moving corporate news market participants kept their focus on Europe, which saw its major bourses rally during its latest session. Buying there was backed by the belief that officials are finally arranging a coordinated effort to shore up the eurozone's ailing banks and fiscal conditions after months of grappling with precarious conditions.

Stocks were subjected to some afternoon selling after an official from Germany reportedly remarked that there is no intention to increase the eurozone emergency funding plan, but it was later learned from CNBC that eurozone officials are planning for an European investment bank already in existence to use special purpose vehicles to issue bonds that would help finance the purchase of debt. The EFSF would also be used to shore up bank capital.

The major equity averages rallied in response to the CNBC story. Buying remained steady into the close, helping stocks settle at session highs.

Financials, especially banks, led the afternoon advance. They were fueled by the notion that efforts to restore Europe's financial conditions would effectively reduce risk related to their presence in the continent. Overall, the financial sector advanced 4.4%, but the KBW Bank Index bounced 5.2%.

Tech stocks trailed all session, but the sector managed to join in the broad market's late rally to settle with a 1.3% gain. Due to the relative weakness of large-cap tech issues, the Nasdaq was never able to match the performance of its counterparts.

Strength among stocks put pressure on Treasuries, causing the yield on the benchmark 10-year Note to return to 1.90%, which is more than 20 basis points above the record low that it set late last week.

The dollar oscillated for most of the day, but ultimately finished with a slight loss against a collection of competing currencies. The euro ended the day down narrowly against the dollar; its loss was reduced in the wake of the eurozone headlines.

Advancing Sectors: Financials +4.4%, Energy +3.6%, Materials +3.1%, Industrials +2.5%, Consumer Discretionary +2.2%, Consumer Staples +1.8%, Health Care +1.6%, Telecom +1.5%, Tech +1.3%, Utilities +0.8%
Declining Sectors: (None)

Source: Briefing

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