The early strength on
Economists had been expecting the index to inch up to a reading of 85.4 from the 85.2 originally reported for the previous month.
The markets have also reacted positively to the latest batch of earnings news, with drug giant Merck (MRK) moving notably higher after reporting better than expected second quarter results.
Nonetheless, trading activity has remained somewhat subdued as traders look ahead to the Federal Reserve's announcement of its latest monetary policy decision on Wednesday.
Telecom, biotechnology, and housing stocks have moved significantly higher in early trading, while most of the other major sectors are showing only modest moves.
Currently, the major are posting moderate gains, not far off their highs for the young session. The Dow is up 67.77 points or 0.4% at 17,050.46, the Nasdaq is up 22.23 points or 0.5% at 4,467.13 and the S&P 500 is up 5.22 points or 0.3% at 1,984.13.
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