U.S. stocks rose solidly Tuesday after European markets rallied and corporate bellwether Alcoa predicted stronger demand in 2012. The Standard & Poor's 500 index closed at its highest level since July.
Kicking off U.S. corporate earnings season, aluminum maker Alcoa said late Monday that its fourth-quarter revenue far outpaced analysts' projections. It expects that global aluminum demand will increase 7 percent in 2012. Rising demand for aluminum would reflect broader economic growth because many industries rely on the metal.
The Dow Jones industrial average closed up 69.78 points, or 0.6 percent, to 12,462.47.
The S&P 500 index rose 11.38, or 0.9 percent, to 1,292.08.
The Nasdaq composite index gained 25.94, or 1 percent, to 2,702.50.
So far this week:
The Dow is up 102.55 points, or 0.8 percent.
The S&P 500 is up 14.27, or 1.1 percent.
The Nasdaq is up 28.28, or 1.1 percent.
For the year to date:
The Dow is up 244.91 points, or 2 percent.
The S&P 500 is up 34.48, or 2.7 percent.
The Nasdaq is up 97.35, or 3.7 percent.