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Treasury prices and yields move in opposite directions. That helped bank stocks because rising yields mean banks can charge higher interest rates on loans.

"Valuations don't bother me terribly", said Tim Ghriskey, chief investment officer of Solaris Group in Bedford Hills, New York. On Friday it touched $1,357.54, the highest since August a year ago. Dow futures gained 0.6 percent to 21,889.00 and broader S&P 500 futures added 0.5 percent to 5,164.07.

The CBOE volatility index .VIX , a widely-followed measure of market anxiety, fell 1.36 points to 10.76.

"Against a backdrop of concerns about North Korea which despite a quiet weekend, could escalate again today as the U.S. goes back to the United Nations to try and push for a vote on further sanctions today".

The dollar increased 0.95 percent against the Japanese yen.

US stocks booked losses last week (http://www.marketwatch.com/story/wall-street-stocks-set-for-losses-as-life-threatening-irma-aims-for-florida-2017-09-08) ahead of Hurricane Irma, which made landfall in the Florida Keys on Sunday. "Millions of homes lost power but not as many as had been widely thought and while damages are likely to run into the billions, they are not likely to run anywhere near the more extreme pre-storm estimates". European insurers were also gaining on Monday, amid some signs Irma's impact may be less than expected.

Asian stock markets pushed higher in relief, with Tokyo gaining 1.4 percent. Larger insurers also rallied. At current levels, major indexes are less than 2 percentage points from all-time highs.

Key US oil contract West Texas Intermediate sank 3.3 percent Friday while European benchmark Brent North Sea crude slid 1.3 percent in value.

Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 2,212 to 385.

The pound meanwhile steadied Monday awaiting British MPs first vote on a bill to end Britain s membership of the EU.

North Korea marked the 69th anniversary of its founding on Saturday without resorting to any further missile or nuclear tests, fuelling some unwinding of safe-haven bets such as gold and government debt and pushing shares higher.

Bond prices sank. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note rose to 2.12 from 2.05 percent.

Gold, another traditional haven for money managers, fell 1.1%. Those companies tend to do better when bond yields are falling, as investors see them as an alternative to bonds due to their large dividend payments.

Apple rose 1.81 per cent a day ahead of the expected launch of a new iPhone, providing the biggest boost to the Nasdaq and S&P 500. Microsoft added 71 cents, or 1 percent, to $74.69 and Mastercard rose $4.15, or 3 percent, to $141.37. The euro slid to $1.1964 from $1.12028.

USA crude was trading 36 cents firmer at 47.84 dollars a barrel, while Brent rose 22 cents to 56.00 dollars.

The Stoxx Europe 600 rose 1%, boosted by gains in bank, insurance and technology shares - sectors that tend to gain when investors feel confident enough to take on more risk.

Spread betting firm CMC Markets expects the FTSE 100 index to open around 28 points higher at 7,405 having closed 19 points lower on Friday. South Korea's Kospi advanced 0.7 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng added 1 percent.


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