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Stocks climbed higher Thursday, as Wall Street brushed aside concerns about a Chinese interest rate hike to focus on comments by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke that a pause in U.S. rate increases may be ahead.


In midday trading, the Dow Jones industrial average gained 58.67, or 0.5 percent, to 11,413.16. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 9.34, or 0.7 percent, to 1,314.75, and the Nasdaq composite index rose 27.37, or 1.2 percent, to 2,361.00.


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Los Angeles-based Diagnostic Products Corp. jumped 19 percent to $57.81 after Siemens AG said it has agreed to buy the company for about $1.86 billion. MRV Communications Inc. , which announced earnings Wednesday, gained 14 percent to $4.09. Los Angeles-based VCA Antech Inc. , which announced earnings Wednesday, rose 13 percent to $30.55. Manhattan Beach-based Skecher USA Inc. , which announced earnings Wednesday, added 7 percent to $27.86. Van Nuys-based Cherokee Inc. rose 3 percent to $42.39 on news that it had dropped out of the race to acquire Mossimo Inc.


Santa Monica-based Mossimo Inc. fell 8.6 percent to $7.88 on news that Iconix Brand Group Inc., whose bid for the company had been lower than Cherokee's, would be the likely winner in the bidding war for the company. Torrance-based Hi-Shear Technology Corp. was down 10 percent to $9.33 after having seen an 184 percent jump price over the last 2-1/2 weeks.

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