Stocks closed below their session highs but still finished in positive territory after Alcoa set a strong tone for the third-quarter earnings season. The firm posted a $77 million profit after the bell yesterday. Also helping was good news on the jobs front, with last week’s initial claims for jobless benefits down 33,000 to 521,000. The Dow gained 61 points to close at 9,787. The Nasdaq added 14 points to close at 2,124, and the S&P 500 gained 8 points, closing at 1,065, the Wall Street Journal reports.