Home builder KB Home rose 86 cents, or 5.9%, to $15.50, and DR Horton rose 46 cents, or 5.1%, to $9.47. Investors shrugged off a downbeat reading on the housing market. S&P/Case Shiller reported a 18.7% drop in its March home price index. The decrease was a little bigger than in February, and slightly larger than economists predicted.
Tech stocks showed some of the biggest gains in part after an analyst raised her rating on Apple saying the growth of the company's iPhone device has been underestimated. Apple rose $8.28, or 6.8%, to $130.78.
GM reversed an early slide after it outlined a deal with labor unions, rising 1 cent to $1.44. However the automaker has yet to reach a deal with its major bondholders and is facing a midnight deadline Tuesday for doing so.
The Russell 2000 index of smaller companies jumped 22.69, or 4.8%, to 500.31 as investors placed bets that these businesses would be among the first to benefit from an improving economy as often happens following recessions.
About five stocks rose for every one that fell on the New York Mercantile Exchange, where consolidated volume came to 5.5 billion shares compared with 4.3 billion shares traded Friday ahead of the holiday weekend.
Bond prices fell, pushing the yield on the 10-year Treasury note up to a six-month high of 3.55% from 3.46% late Friday.
The dollar was mixed against other major currencies, while gold prices fell.
Light, sweet crude rose 78 cents to settle at $62.45 per barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Overseas, Britain's FTSE 100 rose 1.1%, Germany's DAX index rose 1.4%, and France's CAC-40 rose 1.1%. Japan's Nikkei stock average fell 0.4%.