Health sector leads Wall Street higher

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Stocks rose on Monday after health-care overhaul passed a crucial test in the Senate and as aluminum producer Alcoa announced an overseas deal and a brokerage upgraded its stock.

Alcoa Inc shares rose 7.1 percent to $15.61 to lead gains in the Dow industrials after Morgan Stanley raised the stock to overweight. Separately, Alcoa said Sunday it will partner with Saudi Arabian Mining Co Ltd <1211.SE> to develop a low-cost aluminum complex.

Health insurer stocks rose, with the Morgan Stanley Health Payor index <.HMO> up 4 percent and Aetna Inc rising 5.5 percent to $34.30.

A broad health-care overhaul passed a crucial test in the Senate early Monday, as enough votes were put together to clear a key procedural hurdle in approving President Barack Obama's top legislative priority.

The market was just looking for clarity, and with the vote it can pin down what the effect is going to be on these companies, said Craig Miller, vice president of health-care trading at Stifel Nicolaus in Baltimore.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> gained 113.52 points, or 1.10 percent, to 10,442.41. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> rose 12.95 points, or 1.17 percent, to 1,115.42. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> jumped 24.47 points, or 1.11 percent, to 2,236.16.

Intel Corp , a Dow component, rose 2.6 percent to $20.14 after Barclays raised its rating to overweight.

The S&P energy sector <.GSPE> rose 1.2 percent, as February crude gained 0.6 percent to $74.89 per barrel.

Drugmaker Sanofi-Aventis agreed to buy U.S. consumer health-care group Chattem Inc for about $1.9 billion in a deal to give Sanofi an over-the-counter presence in the United States. Chattem shares soared about 33 percent to $92.86.

(Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

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