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The close: U.S. financials drive S&P 500 Add to ...

Stocks rose on Monday, as a low reading on Chinese inflation and rising U.S. retail sales overshadowed weaker commodity prices that had weighed on Canada's benchmark index earlier in the day.

The Dow Jones industrial average closed at 13,424.23, up 95.38 points or 0.7 per cent. The broader S&P 500 closed at 1440.13, up 11.54 points or 0.8 per cent. In Canada, the S&P/TSX composite index closed at 12,229.96, up 27.92 points or 0.2 per cent.

U.S. retail sales rose 1.1 per cent in September, well above the 0.8 per cent gain expected by economists. Previous months were also revised higher, with August sales rising 1.2 per cent versus an earlier report showing a 0.9 per cent rise.

China reported that consumer prices in September rose just 1.9 per cent over last year, marking the slowest pace of inflation in two years. While that reflects a slowing economy, it also gives the government breathing room in introducing stimulus measures to boost activity.

Japan’s Softbank Corp. agreed to buy a 70 per cent stake in Sprint Nextel Corp. for more than $20-billion (U.S.). Sprint shares, which had risen last week in the runup to the official announcement, retreated 0.7 per cent.

Citigroup Inc. rose 5.5 per cent after it reported a third-quarter profit of $1.06 a share, after excluding one-time items. That topped forecasts among analysts, who had been expecting earnings of 97 cents a share.

Other U.S. bank stocks also moved higher, driving the S&P 500 financials subindex to gains of 1.2 per cent overall. Bank of America Corp. rose 3.5 per cent and JPMorgan Chase & Co. rose 1.8 per cent.

Gold fell to $1,737.60 an ounce, down more than $22.10. That marked its biggest one-day decrease in about three months. Over the past week, gold has tumbled a total of 3 per cent, though the declines follow a 16 per cent rally from May to early October.

Among Canadian gold producers, Barrick Gold Corp. fell 0.8 per cent.

Crude oil closed in New York at $91.87 a barrel, up 1 cent. Suncor Energy Inc. rose less than 0.1 per cent.

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