US stocks keep rising amid oil volatility

By on June 3, 2016

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NEW YORK—US stocks pared early losses to end mildly higher Thursday, as investors meditated on the volatility in oil prices and remarks from the European Central Bank (ECB) President Mario Draghi.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 48.89 points, or 0.27 percent, to 17,838.56. The S&P 500 increased 5.93 points, or 0.28 percent, to 2,105.26. The Nasdaq Composite Index added 19.11 points, or 0.39 percent, to 4,971.36.

Oil prices initially tumbled in the early trading Thursday as the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries ended a meeting without setting a ceiling for its production, but then reversed losses to settle mildly higher after official data showed that US crude stockpiles fell 1.4 million barrels in the last week.

Overseas, Draghi on Thursday announced to continue with the low-interest-rate policy for longer and demanded structural reforms in all countries.

“Based on our regular economic and monetary analyses, we decided to keep the key ECB interest rates unchanged,” Draghi told a press conference after a monthly Governing Council meeting of ECB in Vienna.

European equities closed narrowly mixed Thursday amid Draghi’s comments. German benchmark DAX index at Frankfurt Stock Exchange edged up 0.03 percent, while British benchmark FTSE 100 Index inched down 0.10 percent.

In Asia, Tokyo stocks closed sharply lower Thursday as the yen’s appreciation against the US dollar, jitters about Japan’s delay to a planned consumption tax hike and nerves over Britain’s possible exit from the European Union weighed heavily on investor sentiment.

On the economic front, US private sector employment increased by 173,000 jobs from April to May, slightly below market consensus of 175,000, said the May ADP National Employment Report Thursday.

In the week ending May 28, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial jobless claims was 267,000, a decrease of 1,000 from the previous week’s unrevised level, the US Labor Department said Thursday.