Never mind that profits at Target (TGT) and Home Depot (HD) fell from a year ago. In Wall Street's expectations game, both companies were winners, beating analysts' estimates and helping to persuade investors that the economic outlook wasn't quite as gloomy as it looked yesterday.

The Dow Jones industrial average climbed 83 points, or 0.9 percent, to close at 9,218, recouping some of the losses it's seen over the past two trading sessions. The Dow has fallen 2 percent since the opening bell last Friday. But today 24 of the average's 30 stocks climbed, paced by American Express (AXP) and Alcoa (AA).

For more stocks making moves today, be sure to check out BloggingStocks' market wrap-up.

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