Led by increases in the beaten-down energy group and the acquisition-driven healthcare industry the Dow yesterday crossed into positive territory for the first time this year.
Not only that but the Nasdaq 100 closed at its highest level in more than 15 years.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 165.22 points, or 0.94 per cent, to 17,828.76, the S&P 500 gained 24.69 points, or 1.19 per cent, to 2,104.05 and the Nasdaq Composite added 73.40 points, or 1.45 per cent, to 5,127.15.
The S&P, which is up nearly 13 per cent since hitting its lowest level for the year in August, broke through the 2,100 barrier, bringing it nearer to its all-time closing high of 2,130.82 in May.
“The upward trend that was put in place last week has continued to gain steam,” said Michael James, managing director of equity trading at Wedbush Securities in Los Angeles. “I don’t necessarily think there’s a specific catalyst for it today. Risk appetite has clearly increased.”
Oil majors Exxon and Chevron were two of the three biggest drivers of positive performance for the Dow after both companies posted better-than-expected results on Friday. Chevron gained 4.5 per cent to $94.96 and Exxon finished up 3.1 per cent at $85.28.
Dyax soared 28.4 per cent to $35.35 after British drugmaker Shire said it would buy the company for about $5.9bn (£3.83bn)
US-listed shares of Valeant rose 7.1 percent at $100.47 after short-seller Citron Research said it would not be releasing new allegations against the Canadian drug maker.