3 Stocks Topping the Dow's Rally

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What a difference a day makes! Continued improvement at home (weekly jobless claims are the lowest since March 2008) and increased confidence in a Greek debt deal, the market happily resumed its low-volatility climb.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEX: ^DJI) rebounded from its worst day in 2012 yesterday, down 0.8%, with its best performance in two weeks, up 0.96%. Today's 123-point gain puts the Dow only 96 points shy of crossing 13,000, a level not seen since May 2008, before Lehman collapsed. Not to be left out, the S&P 500 (INDEX: ^GSPC) gained 1.1% and hit a nine-month high with each of the 10 sectors making up the index recording gains.

As good as the Dow's day was, let's take a closer look at three components that fared even better.

Microsoft (NYS: MSFT) set a new 52-week high thanks to a 4.1% increase on the heaviest volume in the Nasdaq. Mr. Softy has drawn increasing interest since upping its dividend to $0.20, and a revamped MSN service could be a catalyst for the company.

Apparently confidence over a Greek deal getting finalized is more important for bank shares than would be a possible downgrade of over 100 eurozone financial institutions by Moody's. Financial Bank of America (NYS: BAC) climbed 4.0%, topping its "Too Big To Fail" brethren, and American Express (NYS: AXP) saw its shares increase 2.6% as improved housing starts and fewer jobless claims bolstered the sense that a real recovery is here. A healthy domestic economy - and, more importantly, the return of the American consumer -- will help get these stocks back to their winning ways.

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At the time this article was published David Williamsonholds no position in any company mentioned.Click hereto see his holdings and a short bio. The Motley Fool owns shares of Bank of America and Microsoft.Motley Fool newsletter serviceshave recommended buying shares of Microsoft; creating a bull call spread position in Microsoft; and creating a write covered strangle position in American Express. 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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