US STOCKS-Wall St on record track led by tech, bank stocks
* Bank of America rises on profit beat
* Chip stocks rise on SoftBank deal to buy ARM Holdings
* Indexes up: Dow 0.1 pct, S&P 0.3 pct, Nasdaq 0.6 pct (Updates to afternoon, changes byline)
By Rodrigo Campos
July 18 (Reuters) - Wall Street rose on Monday as Bank of America's better-than-expected profit and a tech sector deal fed recent optimism about a stronger U.S. economy.
SoftBank's $32-billion deal to buy British chip designer ARM Holdings lifted U.S. chip stocks, and the technology sector led the way higher on the S&P 500.
Bank of America's earnings report continued the momentum for U.S. banks, kicked off by JPMorgan last week. The bank's shares rose 3.6 percent to $14.15, helping the S&P financial index gain 0.4 percent.
"The underlying catalyst is a breakout in economic optimism," said Jim Paulsen, chief investment strategist at Wells Capital Management in Minneapolis.
"What's really important is people are revising up their earnings numbers. You see more cyclical (sectors) taking over leadership and less of the bond-like stocks." Continuación...