Stocks Rally Amid Takeovers, Caterpillar

U.S. stocks ended higher on Monday as a round of corporate takeovers and strong earnings from Caterpillar boosted investor sentiment. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 104.83 points, or 0.89%, to 11,913.62, led by a 5% rise in Caterpillar, Inc. The S&P 500 rose 15.94 points, or 1.29%, to 1,254.19, led by natural-resource stocks and financials. The Nasdaq Composite gained 61.98 points, or 2.35%, to 2,699.44.

Ellison’s Oracle Corp. on Monday unveiled a deal to acquire RightNow Technologies Inc., expanding its cloud computing arsenal, three weeks after rival sought to minimize the tech giant’s efforts in the major corporate IT trend.

Rising precious-metal prices helped Caterpillar Inc. to more than double its mining-equipment sales in the third quarter and lift its order backlog to a record level, results showed Monday. For the third quarter, Caterpillar said its profit climbed to $1.14 billion, or $1.71 a share, from $792 million, or $1.22 a share, in the year-ago period. Revenue climbed to $15.72 billion from $10.45 billion.

Netflix Inc reported an increase in third-quarter revenue that beat analyst expectations but said DVD subscriptions would sharply decline in the fourth quarter. Its revenue rose 49 percent from a year earlier to $822 million in the quarter that ended in September. Earnings per share of $1.16 on net income of $62 million.

States cut 49,000 jobs over the past year and localities 210,000, according to an analysis of Labor Department statistics. There are 30,000 fewer federal workers now than a year ago — including 5,300 Postal Service jobs canceled last month. By contrast, private-sector jobs have increased by 1.6 million over the past 12 months. But the state, local and federal job losses have become a drag on efforts to nudge the nation’s unemployment rate down from its painfully high 9.1 percent.

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