June 17 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. stocks rallied and benchmark indexes were set to halt a six-week drop as a gauge of economic indicators topped forecasts, helping the market extend an early gain spurred by signs of progress on a bailout for Greece.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index climbed 0.9 percent to 1,278.71 at 10:03 a.m. in New York. The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 107.4 points, or 0.9 percent, to 12,068.92 .
The Conference Board’s gauge of the outlook for the next three to six months rose 0.8 percent after a revised 0.4 percent
decline in April, the New York-based group said today. Economists forecast a 0.3 percent gain, according to the median estimate in a Bloomberg News survey.
Stocks maintained gains earlier after the Thomson Reuters/University of Michigan preliminary index of consumer sentiment in the U.S. fell to 71.8 in June from 74.3 a month earlier, trailing the median projection of 74 in a Bloomberg News survey of economists.
The S&P 500 has fallen 7 percent from this year’s high at the end of April through yesterday. Equities slumped as reports showed business activity cooled more than forecast, sales of existing homes unexpectedly declined and growth in industrial production stopped. The decline threatened the 2011 gain for the
S&P 500, which was up 0.8 percent through yesterday.
Global stocks rose earlier today as Chancellor Angela Merkel retreated from German demands that bondholders be forced to shoulder a “substantial” share of a Greek rescue, saying she’ll work with the European Central Bank to avoid disrupting markets.
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