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US stocks post biggest gains of 2012

The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Standard Poor's 500 rallied on hopes for further monetary stimulus.

Us stocks 2012 6 6Enlarge
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange on June 6, 2012. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

US stocks rallied today, posting their biggest gains of the year, on speculation more European and US monetary stimulus may be on the way.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 286.84 points, or 2.4 percent, to 12414.79, while the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index advanced 29.63 points, or 2.3 percent, to 1315.13, according to the New York Times.

The tech-heavy Nasdaq added 66.61 points, or 2.4 percent, to 2844.72.

The Wall Street Journal noted that the Dow and S&P percentage increases were the biggest since December, while the Nasdaq's was the largest in more than a fortnight.

Comments by two men triggered the rally in stocks, according to Bloomberg. European Central Bank President Mario Draghi said officials were “ready to act” as the euro zone crisis drags on.

Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Dennis Lockhart said the US central bank may need to consider further monetary easing if the economic outlook continued to deteriorate.

"I think the market was oversold," Hank Smith, chief investment officer at Haverford Trust Co. in Philadelphia, was quoted by Reuters as saying.

"And although you didn't get anything that concrete from the (European Central Bank) ... there's clearly an expectation in the market that Europe will eventually, and eventually means very soon, provide more liquidity for the banks."

More from GlobalPost: Moody's downgrades banks in Germany, Austria

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/americas/united-states/120606/us-stocks-post-biggest-gains-2012