U.S. stocks rose on Monday as troubled lender CIT Group Inc is expected to close a deal with bondholders that could remove uncertainty and point to a healthier financial sector.

CIT shares soared 91.4 percent to $1.34 as the small and mid-sized U.S. business lender was to announce an agreement to obtain $3 billion in emergency financing that would keep it out of bankruptcy, according to a person close to the matter.

The fact that it is not a government solution is what looks like is keeping (CIT) in business right now means the financial markets are functioning a little better, said Kurt Brunner, portfolio manager at Swarthmore Group in Philadelphia.

In company news, shares of machinery maker Caterpillar Inc advanced 6.3 percent to $36.14 and gave the top boost to the Dow industrials after Bank of America-Merrill Lynch upgraded the stock to buy, saying the second quarter may mark a bottom for the construction market.

Blue-chip Cisco Systems Inc gained 2.8 percent to $21.08 on Nasdaq following an upgrade of its stock to outperform by Credit Suisse, based on what the bank saw as expected earnings momentum against a backdrop of low expectations.

And shares of Human Genome Sciences Inc surged 209 percent to $10.26 on Nasdaq after the biotechnology company said its experimental drug to treat lupus was successful in a late-stage clinical trial.

The Dow Jones industrial average <.DJI> gained 58.42 points, or 0.67 percent, to 8,802.36. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index <.SPX> rose 5.84 points, or 0.62 percent, to 946.22. The Nasdaq Composite Index <.IXIC> added 13.28 points, or 0.70 percent, to 1,899.88.

Driven higher by corporate earnings, the broad S&P 500 finished last week with a 7 percent gain for its best week since mid-March. The S&P 500 is up 39.8 percent from a 12-year closing low hit on March 9.

Despite warning that there is still a significant risk of a double-dip recession, Goldman Sachs raised its year-end target for the S&P 500 to 1,060 from 940 -- an increase of 12 percent from current levels.

Moving ahead in the earnings season, big companies due to report quarterly scorecards on Monday include Texas Instruments Inc and Legg Mason Inc .

(Editing by Jan Paschal)