Retail Sales, Banks, Pharma Drive Dow to Biggest Gain in a Month

By Joshua Freed, AP Business Writer

Stocks rose on Monday after a strong gain in retail spending suggested that consumers could be getting more confident about the economy. Bank stocks rose broadly after Citigroup (C) delivered a strong earnings report.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 95.38 points to close at 13,424.23, its biggest gain since Sept. 13.

The Standard & Poor's 500 index was up 11.54 points at 1,440.13 and the Nasdaq composite index rose 20.07 points to 3,064.18.

Companies that rely on consumer spending, like Lowe's (LOW), TJX Cos. (TJX) and Yum Brands (YUM), rose after the government reported that retail sales rose 1.1 percent in the U.S. last month. The Commerce Department also revised August growth up to 1.2 percent, marking the two largest gains since October 2010.

Sales rose in most major categories. Electronics and appliances jumped 4.5 percent with help from the new iPhone. Sales at auto dealers increased 1.3 percent. Building materials and garden supplies, furniture and clothing sales all gained, too.

"The retail sales numbers tell us that the economy in general, and consumer spending in particular, probably did better than most expected in the third quarter," said Hugh Johnson, chairman and chief investment officer of Johnson Illington Advisors.

Citigroup rose $1.91, or 5.5 percent, to $36.66 after beating beat Wall Street earnings estimates.

Most other financial stocks followed Citi higher. Bank of America (BAC) rose 3.5 percent, and JPMorgan Chase (JPM) rose 1.8 percent. However, Wells Fargo (WFC) continued to struggle after reporting a record profit on Friday. Analysts warned it might have trouble making money on interest payments for loans. Its stock fell 1 percent on Monday, after dropping on Friday, too.

Economic figures from China helped support markets in Europe at the start of a week that could offer greater clarity on the economic fates of Greece and Spain.

China's inflation rate fell to 1.9 percent in September from 2 percent the month before, reinforcing investor hopes for more stimulus in the world's second-largest economy.

Good news for two major drugmakers boosted pharmaceutical stocks and pushed the whole health sector to the biggest gains among 10 industry groups in the S&P 500.

Eli Lilly (LLY) said a potential stomach cancer treatment met goals for improved patient survival. It hasn't yet submitted the drug, ramucirumab, for government approval.

And Abbott Laboratories (ABT) said an experimental drug regimen cured 99 percent of patients with hepatitis C. Patients in the trial had genotype 1 hepatitis C, the most common type in the Western world, and the hardest to treat.

Eli Lilly rose $2.08, or 4 percent, to $52.53. Abbott rose $2.77, also 4 percent, to $72.05. Other drugmakers also rose. Pfizer (PFE) and Merck (MRK) rose more than 1 percent and Bristol-Myers Squibb (BMY) rose 2.5 percent.

Telecommunications stocks were the only declining industry among the 10 in the S&P 500.

Travel deals website operator Travelzoo Inc. (TZOO) fell again after warning on Friday that its poorly-performing hotel search business will hurt third-quarter results. On Monday, its stock fell 85 cents, or 4.2 percent, to $19.17.

Home health care provider Amedisys Inc. (AMED) fell $1.25, or 9.4 percent, to $12.08 after saying revenue from health insurer Humana Inc. (HUM) will shrink.

Investors sold government bonds and drove yields slightly higher. The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note rose to 1.67 percent from 1.66 percent Friday.

The price of crude oil fell a penny to finish at $91.85 on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

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mily469

i just had a wonderful experience with a doctor and hospital. 3 days in the hospital the doctor told me i was to get on a lifetime of medication, no discussions. i said no. my follow up visit with another doctor is finding nothing wrong and no need for medication. question everyone and get a second or third opinion. remember big pharma has teams of lobbyists pushing medications for profit.

October 16 2012 at 8:44 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
A.G. SESKIS

Hahahaha ,....
Crooks making deals with other Crooks,....STILL at the tax payer expense.
Now because the REAL interest to BANKS from the FED. is at 0 ,...let me spell that out for you idiots ,....*** ZERO *** ,....The SAME CROOKS STILL want to charge you the interest rate anywhere from 14-29% ??? !!
Why ,...and why does the stupid American Public STILL do business with these CROOKS ?? !!
NEW LINES OF CREDIT ,..... ** ONLY ** 2-$500 ????
REALLY ???
Wake up people,....DONT keep buying into the CROOKS !!
Let`s say your 50,...have a mortgage for over 22 yrs, AND RAISED KIDS,......held steady jobs at 15-20 yr intervals,..get laid off,...NOT from what you done, .. ( show up to work everyday, work EXTRA hrs / days / etc. ),..NEVER been late on mortgage / credit cards / etc. ,...but yet THESE CROOKED BANKS want to offer you ONLY A $ 200 CREDIT CARD LIMIT ??? !!!! BULLSHIT !!!
AND ,....IF you DONT USE their piece of CRAP Credit Card,..because you DONT need to use their crap ass $200 credit line,.. ( you have MORE money in the savings acct. / etc. ),....because you CAN pay your bills every month,......THEY END UP DROPPING YOU FOR ** NOT ** USING THEIR HIGH PRICED CREDIT !!!!
AND,.....LESS that 3-5 months LATER ,...SEND YOU BULLSHIT IN THE MAIL,..TO ** AGAIN ** , join them ,..PLEAD YOU TO GET THEIR CROOKED AZZ CREDIT CARD BACK @ 29% INTEREST !!!!
HOW STUPID DO THESE CO.`S THINK WE ARE ???
SCREW THEM !!
AND THE U.S.A. Public should BOYCOTT these clowns for INSULTING the U.S.A. Citizen / Tax payer !!!
IF THESE IDIOTS CANCELLED ME BEFORE @ 29% INTEREST BECAUSE I ** DIDNT *** NEED THEIR BULLSHIT HIGH INTEREST RATE OF COOKED CREDIT,....WHY DO YOU THINK I WILL JOIN AGAIN ???? ARE THESE CREDIT / BANKS REALLY THINK I AM THAT STUPID !! ?? !!
YOU DROP ME BECAUSE I ** DONT ** NEED YOUR BULLSHIT CREDIT ,..BUT SEND ME LATER IN THE MAIL TO JOIN ** AGAIN *** ???? !!!
SCREW THAT BANKING / CREDIT AGENCIES ,..THEY ARE NOTHING BUT FOOLS / JOKERS ,...AND *** DONT *** have the 1st damn clue about what kind of person I REALLY AM !!!!!!!
MY WORDS TO THEM ,,.... ** SCREW YOU **** !!!!! YOU LOST, MY BUSINESS ,... I DIDNT LOSE A DAMN THING BY ** NOT ** BEING In BUSINESS WITH YOU CROOKS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Thanks,
Try to have a nice day ,..with out being screwed.

October 16 2012 at 7:05 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
A.G. SESKIS

Hahahaha ,....
Crooks making deals with other Crooks,....STILL at the tax payer expense.
Now because the REAL interest to BANKS from the FED. is at 0 ,...let me spell that out for you idiots ,....*** ZERO *** ,....The SAME CROOKS STILL want to charge you the interest rate anywhere from 14-29% ??? !!
Why ,...and why does the stupid American Public STILL do business with these CROOKS ?? !!
NEW LINES OF CREDIT ,..... ** ONLY ** 2-$500 ????
REALLY ???
Wake up people,....DONT keep buying into the CROOKS !!
Let`s say your 50,...have a mortgage for over 22 yrs, AND RAISED KIDS,......held steady jobs at 15-20 yr intervals,..get laid off,...NOT from what you done, .. ( show up to work everyday, work EXTRA hrs / days / etc. ),..NEVER been late on mortgage / credit cards / etc. ,...but yet THESE CROOKED BANKS want to offer you ONLY A $ 200 CREDIT CARD LIMIT ??? !!!! BULLSHIT !!!
AND ,....IF you DONT USE their piece of CRAP Credit Card,..because you DONT need to use their crap ass $200 credit line,.. ( you have MORE money in the savings acct. / etc. ),....because you CAN pay your bills every month,......THEY END UP DROPPING YOU FOR ** NOT ** USING THEIR HIGH PRICED CREDIT !!!!
AND,.....LESS that 3-5 months LATER ,...SEND YOU BULLSHIT IN THE MAIL,..TO ** AGAIN ** , join them ,..PLEAD YOU TO GET THEIR CROOKED AZZ CREDIT CARD BACK @ 29% INTEREST !!!!
HOW STUPID DO THESE CO.`S THINK WE ARE ???
SCREW THEM !!
AND THE U.S.A. Public should BOYCOTT these clowns for INSULTING the U.S.A. Citizen / Tax payer !!!
IF THESE IDIOTS CANCELLED ME BEFORE @ 29% INTEREST BECAUSE I ** DIDNT *** NEED THEIR BULLSHIT HIGH INTEREST RATE OF COOKED CREDIT,....WHY DO YOU THINK I WILL JOIN AGAIN ???? ARE THESE CREDIT / BANKS REALLY THINK I AM THAT STUPID !! ?? !!
YOU DROP ME BECAUSE I ** DONT ** NEED YOUR BULLSHIT CREDIT ,..BUT SEND ME LATER IN THE MAIL TO JOIN ** AGAIN *** ???? !!!

October 16 2012 at 7:00 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
RJM

A clear indication that Obama is turning this country around DESPITE the obstructionist republican congress doing their level best to thwart him at every turn. WTG President Obama. If you bothered to read the article, the stock market gains WERE BASED MOSTLY ON INCREASED CONSUMER SPENDING. Which flies in the face that the rich create jobs - jobs are created when consumers spend and companies need to hire more workers to either produce the products they're buying or to handle the increased customer levels.

October 16 2012 at 2:12 AM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply
chris1011

That Mitt Romney had a successful tenure as CEO of Bain Capital doesn’t mean he’ll be able to turn the economy around, according to an ex-Reagan budget director. Instead, he says, it’s just evidence that the financial system is rigged,

In an op-ed David Stockman argues that the Romney campaign’s refrain is “dead wrong" -- the refrain being that the Republican candidate is prepared to help the sputtering U.S. economy because he transformed struggling companies and created jobs. Instead, Stockman says, it’s “crony capitalism” and central bank help that’s made gambling on failing companies a relatively safe bet.

“Mitt Romney was not a businessman,” he wrote. “He was a master financial speculator who bought, sold, flipped, and stripped businesses.”

October 15 2012 at 7:10 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to chris1011's comment
jdykbpl45

Obama is known by the friends he keeps: Bernake, Geithner, Holder, Pelosi, Reid, Clinton.

October 16 2012 at 8:58 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply