Investing.com - U.S. stocks posted solid gains on Monday after diplomatic efforts to end the Russia-Ukraine conflict appeared to be making progress.
At the close of U.S. trading, the Dow 30 rose 1.06%, the S&P 500 index rose 0.85%, while the NASDAQ Composite index rose 0.97%.
The Volatility S&P 500index, which measures the outlook for market volatility, was down 6.54% at 12.29.
Waning geopolitical concerns in Eastern Europe sparked a rally on Wall Street on Monday.
Russian and Ukraine foreign ministers held talks earlier, and while no resolution to end the conflict emerged, the flow of humanitarian aid deliveries into Ukraine from Russia continued, which calmed nerves in global markets.
Media reports cited a Ukraine official saying that talks in Berlin have brought about "moderate progress," which drew applause in global equities markets as well.
The Ukraine conflict has bruised stock prices in the recent sessions by stoking fears that further escalation can dampen global economic recovery.
On Friday, news that Ukrainian troops destroyed a portion of a Russian column of armored vehicles inside Ukraine rattled nerves across the globe.
Elsewhere, upbeat U.S. data boosted stock prices as well.
The National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo Housing Market Index increased to 55.0 in August, a seven-month high, from 53.0 in July, beating estimates for a reading of 53.0.
A level above 50.0 indicates a favorable outlook on home sales and below indicates a negative outlook.
"As the employment picture brightens, builders are seeing a noticeable increase in the number of serious buyers entering the market," said NAHB Chairman Kevin Kelly.
In corporate news, discount retailer Dollar General Corporation (NYSE:DG) launched a $8.95 billion to buy Family Dollar Stores Inc (NYSE:FDO) Stores, challenging a bid offered by Dollar Tree Inc (NASDAQ:DLTR).
Leading Dow Jones Industrial Average performers included United Technologies Corporation (NYSE:UTX), up 2.33%, Visa Inc (NYSE:V), up 1.94%, and Nike Inc (NYSE:NKE), up 1.87%.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average's worst performers included Merck & Company Inc (NYSE:MRK), down 0.37%, AT&T Inc (NYSE:T), down 0.27%, and Home Depot Inc (NYSE:HD), down 0.11%.
European indices, meanwhile, ended the higher.
After the close of European trade, the DJ Euro Stoxx 50 rose 1.41%, France's CAC 40 rose 1.35%, while Germany's DAX rose 1.68%. Meanwhile, in the U.K. the FTSE 100 rose 0.78%.
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