A trader works on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange. (Scott Eells / Bloomberg )
Stocks edged higher Monday ahead of big meetings in the U.S. and Europe over continued crises: the so-called fiscal cliff and heavily indebted Greece.
The Dow Jones industrial average added 15 points, or 0.1%, to 12,830 shortly after the opening bell. The Dow took a beating last week, dropping more than 300 points following election day as investors signaled they expect more gridlock in Washington.
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The broader Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 3 points, or 0.2%, to 1,383. The Nasdaq was up 10 points, or 0.4%, to 2,915.
European ministers are set to meet concerning Greece, the most troubled economy in the Eurozone debt crisis, following the country's approval of next year's budget, which includes more cuts in public spending.
In Asia, investors weighed mixed economic data. Chinese export growth appeared to offset reports that Japan's economy contracted in the third quarter.
But this week, investors will likely focus on scheduled talks between President Obama and congressional leaders over the fiscal cliff, the automatic spending cuts and tax hikes set to go into effect at the end of the year. Economists have warned the fiscal cliff could send the U.S. back into recession.
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