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Consumer firms lead U.S. stocks higher

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Stocks rose after a two-day slide as consumer shares rebounded amid data showing household purchases rose the most in three months. Biotech shares extended their losses, weighing on the Nasdaq. H&R Block and GameStop climbed, leading gains in consumer shares. And Cognizant Technology rallied after Morgan Stanley raised its recommendation on the stock. Investors have been selling the bull market’s biggest winners, locking in gains as they assess how much of the recent economic weakness is weather-related and if the situation in Ukraine will worsen. And data indicated consumer confidence fell less than previously estimated in March.

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