Stocks jumped Monday as the Dow Jones industrial average and the S&P 500 both closed at a new all-time highs.
The Dow ended up 112 points, a gain of 0.7% to a new high of 16,695.47. It was building on the all-time closing high set on Friday.
The Standard & Poor's 500 index gained 1%, ending at 1,896.65 -- almost six points higher than its previous record closing high of 1,890.90. The broad-based index is inching closer to its next major milestone of 1,900.
The Nasdaq composite index surged 1.8% to 4,144.
A backdrop of an improving economy and low interest rates should favor stocks in the long run, said Gerry Paul, chief investment officer of U.S. value equities at AllianceBernstein.
Oil futures pushed above $100 a barrel with a disputed referendum in Ukraine in focus. The price of oil rose 68 cents, or 0.7%, to $100.66 a barrel.
Pinnacle Foods surged 13.2% to $34.47 a share after the company agreed to be acquired by Hillshire Brands. Pinnacle's brands include Duncan Hines and Aunt Jemima, while Hillshire makes Jimmy Dean and Sara Lee products. Hillshire dropped 3.3% to $35.75.
Equities in Asia moved in competing directions, with the Nikkei index in Tokyo off 0.35% to 14,149.523.
China's Shanghai Composite jumped 2.1% to 2,052.87 after the Cabinet promised in an announcement late Friday to allow local governments to issue bonds and to streamline the approval process for initial public stock offerings. It gave no details, but the news also boosted Hong Kong's market with the Hang Seng up 1.8% to 22,261.61.
India's Sensex index added 1.88% on the final day of voting in a general election there.
European shares moved higher. London's FTSE 100 index was up 0.6% to 6,851.75 and Germany's DAX index jumped 1.3% to 9,702.46. France's CAC 40 rose 0.4% to 4,493.65.
The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.66% from 2.63% late Friday.
The calendar of economic data is pretty light for Monday with no major releases due.
Contributing: The Associated Press