U.S. stocks have climbed to positive territory on Tuesday in a volatile session.   

The S&P 500 Index is up 15.38 points, or 1.28 percent, to trade at 1,216.24 at 2:22 p.m. ET.  The Dow Jones Industrial Average rallied 114.06 points, or 1.00 percent, to trade at 11,511.06.  The Nasdaq Composite climbed 0.70 percent.

In the morning, U.S. stocks were firmly in negative territory before they started to advance around 10:00 a.m. ET.

“Today is the 59th trading day in a row where the S&P 500 has moved 1 percent+ between the high and low of the day,” said Peter Boockvar, equity strategist at Miller Tabak. 

In the past two months, the heightened volatility in the market was largely driven by rumors and headlines regarding the European debt crisis.

On Tuesday, though, U.S. equities seem to be driven by corporate earnings.

The earnings of Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS), up 3.50 percent, and Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), up 7.79 percent, exceeded the market’s expectations and drove the entire financial sector and general stock market higher.

On an absolute level or even compared to the same period last year, Goldman Sachs and Bank of America earnings were nothing to cheer about.  However, these stocks have plunged in recent months and the market may have priced in excessive pessimism.

Basic materials were laggards on Tuesday.  This sector was weighed down by a weak third quarter GDP report from China, a major consumer of raw materials.