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Stocks rally strongly in quiet trading

Trader John Panin works on the floor of

Trader John Panin works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Wednesday, April 1, 2015. Photo Credit: AP / Richard Drew

A jump in the price of crude oil helped send Chevron, Exxon Mobil and other energy giants up on Monday. A weak jobs report late last week also heightened speculation that the Federal Reserve would be slow to raise interest rates this year.

At the close on Wall Street, the Dow Jones industrial average was up 117.6 points, about 1 percent, at nearly 17,881. The Standard & Poor's 500 index gained 13.7 points, about 1 percent, to 2,080.6.7. The Nasdaq composite added 30.4 points, about 1 percent, to 4,917.3.

The price of crude oil as the markets closed was up $2.83 at $51.97 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.

RESPONSE: "If Fed officials think the economy is not strong enough, they're not going to do anything to jeopardize the economic recovery," said analyst David Lefkowitz, senior equity strategist at UBS. "With inflation low and well-contained the Fed can be patient. There's nothing forcing their hand."

SERVICE SECTOR SLOWDOWN: Companies in the services industry expanded at a slightly slower pace in March. The Institute for Supply Management reported Monday that its services index slipped to 56.5 last month, from 56.9 in February. Any reading above 50 reflects growth.

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