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Stocks close higher on factory output surge

Trader Steven Kaplan works on the floor of

Trader Steven Kaplan works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange Friday, March 14, 2014. Credit: AP / Richard Drew

Investors were able to put aside the ongoing political turmoil in Ukraine Monday to focus on a bit of good news on the U.S. economy.

Stocks ended sharply higher, helped by a report showing factory output rebounded last month.

The Dow Jones industrial average added 181.55 points to 16,247.22. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 0.96 percent to 1,858.83 and the Nasdaq Composite rose 0.81 percent to 4,279.95.

The market's gains were broad. All 30 members of the Dow and all 10 industry groups of the S&P 500 rose.

Technology stocks were among the biggest gainers, led by Yahoo, which rose 4 percent. Yahoo owns a quarter of the Chinese e-commerce website Alibaba, which announced plans to go public in the United States.

Shares of Microsoft, Google and Amazon also rose.

Monday's advance comes after stocks spent much of last week in retreat. The major indexes fell roughly 2 percent, their worst week since January, on concerns that the tensions between Ukraine and Russia could boil over.

So far armed conflict does not appear to be in the cards. Crimeans overwhelmingly voted Sunday in favor of Crimea breaking away from Ukraine to return to Russia. -- AP

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