NEW YORK (AP) - Stocks rose sharply for a second straight day Wednesday on signs that the U.S. economy grew in September and that European officials are moving to support the region's struggling banks.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 131 points. Most of the gain, 80 points, came in the last hour of trading.
Analysts attributed the rise to increasing optimism about Europe's efforts to contain its debt crisis and a pair of reports in the U.S. showing a pickup in hiring and growth in service companies last month.
The Dow rose 131.21 points, or 1.2 percent, to close at 10,939.95. The Dow jumped 153 Tuesday after another late-day surge.
The Standard & Poor's 500 rose 20.09, or 1.8 percent, to 1,144.04. The Nasdaq composite jumped 55.69, or 2.3 percent, to 2,460.51.
European bank stocks soared, reflecting increasing optimism that European leaders will succeed in limiting the fallout from Greece's debt problems.