December 16, 2017
Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Energy shares lead Wall Street higher; telecoms slip

US stocks rose today as energy stocks led the S&P 500 and Dow, while Biogen's rally on news about an experimental treatment for Alzheimer's disease topped gains at the Nasdaq.

The day's gains were broad, with nine of the 10 S&P 500 industry sectors higher. The only group to fall was telecoms , down 1.8 percent with AT&T down 2.2 percent at $34.29 and Verizon down 1.8 percent at $49.11. Sprint announced it will cut in half the monthly price of service for Verizon and AT&T customers who switch to Sprint.

Energy shares on the S&P 500 rose 1.3 percent even as crude oil prices resumed their fall. US crude fell 2.4 percent to near a five-year low while Brent lost 2.3 percent.

Exxon Mobil and Chevron were among the largest gainers on both the Dow and the S&P, up about 2 percent each.

The Dow Jones industrial average rose 102.75 points, or 0.58 percent, to 17,879.55, a record high. The S&P 500 gained 13.11 points, or 0.64 percent, to 2,066.55 and the Nasdaq Composite added 28.46 points, or 0.6 percent, to 4,755.81.

European share market indexes also rose, helped by a rebound in energy stocks after crude oil prices bounced from Monday's five-year lows.

BP featured among the top gainers, up 4.7 percent, with several traders citing market talk of a takeover bid from rival Royal Dutch Shell. Shell and BP declined to comment.

Shares in Italian oil services group Saipem and German steelmaker Salzgitter bucked the trend on Tuesday, tumbling 10.8 percent and 7.4 percent respectively after Russia scrapped its 40 billion-euro South Stream European gas export pipeline project, which involved the two firms.

The FTSEurofirst 300 index ended 0.5 percent higher at 1,392.51 points, led by what traders said was a technical bounce in energy shares following last week's sell-off.

Total rose 3.4 percent and Royal Dutch Shell gained 4.1 percent, while the STOXX Europe 600 energy sector index gained 3.2 percent. The index is still down about 22 percent since June, hurt by a slump in crude, with shares of oil services firms the worst hit.

Britain's FTSE 100 index gained 1.3 percent and France's CAC 40 added 0.3 percent.

Germany's DAX slipped 0.3 percent. The index hit 10,000 points earlier in the session, but failed to cross above a record high of 10,050.98 points reached in June, triggering profit taking, traders said.

Meanwhile, Japan's Nikkei share average closed at a seven-year high today, as investors speculated that the Bank of Japan was buying stocks, while they shrugged off a downgrade of Japan's sovereign debt credit rating by Moody's Investors Service.

The Nikkei eked out gains of 0.4 percent to end at 17,663.22, with exporter shares such as Denso leading the gains.

The broader Topix and the JPX-Nikkei Index 400 also rose 0.4 percent.

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Tags:  Stocks  shares  FTSEurofirst  Nikkei  US  Dow Jones  

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