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US STOCKS-Wall St gains on deal news; biotechs jump

* Biotech shares jump after four days of losses

* FedEx to buy Dutch peer TNT; Informatica to go private

* Canada to sell its GM (NYSE: GM - news) stake to Goldman Sachs (NYSE: GS-PB - news)

* Indexes up: Dow 0.4 pct, S&P 0.3 pct, Nasdaq 0.5 pct (Updates to early afternoon)

By Caroline Valetkevitch

NEW YORK, April 7 (Reuters) - U.S. stocks rose on Tuesday, adding to recent gains, after deal news including a bid from FedEx for a Dutch peer suggested companies still see value in the market.

Healthcare stocks led the advance on the S&P 500 with biotech shares up after four days of losses. The Nasdaq Biotech index added 1.8 percent, while the S&P 500 healthcare sector gained 0.8 percent.

Shares (Berlin: DI6.BE - news) of FedEx rose 2.7 percent to $171.17 as it seeks to buy Dutch package delivery company TNT Express for $4.8 billion.

Two years ago, competition regulators blocked United Parcel Service's bid for TNT because, unlike FedEx, that suitor already had a strong European network.

Deals are "the rational outcome of this environment" of low interest rates, said Kim Forrest, senior equity research analyst at Fort Pitt Capital Group in Pittsburgh.

"When you have money in the bank and you either have to return it to shareholders or do something with it  the next thing is you buy a competitor. You put that cash to work."

Energy shares also gave the market support, with the sector up 0.8 percent as crude futures added to gains.

At 12:55 p.m., the Dow Jones industrial average rose 75.28 points, or 0.42 percent, to 17,956.13, the S&P 500 gained 5.83 points, or 0.28 percent, to 2,086.45 and the Nasdaq Composite added 23.70 points, or 0.48 percent, to 4,941.02.

General Motors shares fell 2.1 percent to $35.90 and the stock was among the day's most active after Canada agreed to sell nearly 73.4 million shares of the automaker to Goldman Sachs.

Shares of Twitter (Xetra: A1W6XZ - news) jumped 4.1 percent to $52.90 and hit their highest in six months following a Barron's report that the company has hired advisers to fend off a takeover bid.

Informatica Corp jumped 4.3 percent to $47.78 after the enterprise software provider said it would be taken private by Permira Advisers and Canada Pension Plan Investment Board for about $5.3 billion.

Viacom (NasdaqGS: VIAB - news) shares fell 2 percent to $67.23 after it halted its $20 billion repurchase program as it embarks on a restructuring that includes cutting jobs and reorganizing three of its domestic network groups.

Advancing issues outnumbered declining ones on the NYSE by 1,719 to 1,251; on the Nasdaq, 1,662 issues rose and 1,002 fell.

The benchmark S&P 500 index was posting 9 new 52-week highs and no new lows; the Nasdaq Composite was recording 58 new highs and 16 new lows. (Additional reporting by Rodrigo Campos; Editing by Meredith Mazzilli)