Stocks Start the Third Quarter With Gains

Stocks rose early on Monday, starting the second half of the year by building on the strongest first half of any year since 1998, supported by improving manufacturing data in Europe and a positive business survey in Japan. The Dow Jones Industrial Average lately rose 91.31 points, or 0.61%, to 15,000.91. The S&P 500 added 12.08 points, or 0.75%, to 1,618.36. The Nasdaq Composite gained 33.35 points, or 0.98%, to 3,436.60.

Manufacturing activity grew in June at its slowest pace in eight months as overseas demand dried up and firms took on the fewest new workers in more than three years, a survey showed on Monday. Financial data firm Markit said its final Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index stood at 51.9 in June, below 52.3 in May and a preliminary June estimate of
52.2. A reading above 50 indicates expansion in the sector.

Europe’s prolonged economic decline may have stabilized and even rebounded in some areas, business surveys showed on Monday, although Asia exhibited signs of slowing as global demand wanes.

Gold edged higher on Monday after clocking its biggest quarterly fall ever, helped by comments from a U.S. Federal Reserve official on the need to maintain the bank’s stimulus measures for longer and as Asian stocks eased.

Citigroup Inc (NYS:C) will pay Fannie Mae (FNMA) $968 million to resolve potential mortgage repurchase claims for breaches of representations on loans sold to Fannie Mae between 2000 and 2012.

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