US stocks ended moderately higher on Monday as investors awaited the beginning of a new earnings season, Xinhua reported.
Analysts expected that US corporate earnings will be lower than the previous estimated figures in the last quarter of 2011 due to the weakening global economy.
In Europe, German and French leaders met on Monday to discuss ways to tackle European debt crisis and stimulate euro zone economies, calling for EU states to complete their negotiations on a planned new treaty in the coming days so it could be signed March 1.
On economic front, the Federal Reserve said US consumer credit increased $20.4 billion in November, the biggest jump in 10 years, showing households are optimistic enough to take on debt and banks are willing to lend.
As of Monday's close, the Dow Jones industrial average gained 32.77 points, or 0.27 per cent, to 12,392.69. The Standard & Poor's 500 was up 2.89 points, or 0.23 per cent, to 1,280.70. The Nasdaq Composite Index added 2.34 points, or 0.09 per cent, to 2,676.56.