Why These 3 Dow Stocks Surged Today

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The Dow (INDEX: ^DJI) rose an impressive 0.66% today. But some companies surged more than others. These were the top three performers in today's Dow:

Company

Change

Bank of America (NYS: BAC) 3.2%
Hewlett Packard (NYS: HPQ) 2.8%
United Technologies (NYS: UTX) 2.4%

Why, you may ask, did these three stocks take off?

Shares of Bank of America continue to climb as it's looking increasingly likely we may actually see a settlement over the alleged foreclosure fraud that's been plaguing banks and mortgage servicers. There's overwhelming evidence to suggest that banks have been falsifying court documents in order to foreclose on homeowners for years. Since the settlement cost is relatively small and is being negotiated before the allegations have even been investigated, the deal can be presumed to be extremely favorable to the banks. We're now beginning to find out that the proposed settlement may not only cover past, but, oddly enough, future fraud as well. Amazing.

This week, Hewlett Packard shareholders received their own bit of good legal news when a court dismissed Oracle's (NAS: ORCL) lawsuit against the tech giant. Oracle had accused HP of concealing the fact that it was going to hire Leo Apotheker and Ray Lane, both of whom hate Oracle, at the time that HP's CEO Mark Hurd was getting traded to Oracle. The judge ruled that the charges were pretty irrelevant.

United Technologies is just one of a number of cyclical stocks -- particularly capital goods and consumer cyclicals -- that outperformed the market today. Cyclicals have been making a big comeback so far in 2012, as investors become increasingly optimistic about improving manufacturing, employment, and sales data.

Bank of America, Hewlett Packard, United Technologies all beat the market today. But if you're interested in one stock that our chief investment officer picked to crush the market in 2012, check out our brand-new report, "The Motley Fool's Top Stock for 2012." It highlights a company that is revolutionizing commerce in Latin America. For a limited time, you can get instant access to the name of this company for free.

At the time this article was published Ilan Moscovitzdoesn't own shares of any company mentioned. The Motley Fool owns shares of Oracle and Bank of America. Try any of our Foolish newsletter servicesfree for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe thatconsidering a diverse range of insightsmakes us better investors. The Motley Fool has adisclosure policy.

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