Close Update: U.S. Stocks Mostly Add to Gains After Yellen's Speech, Oil Hits Eight-Month High

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U.S. stocks ended Tuesday's session mostly higher, building on gains made after a Monday speech by Fed Chair Janet Yellen that omitted any mention of the timing of future interest-rate increases.

Yellen predicted that the domestic economy would continue to improve and said that she expects further gradual increases in the federal funds rate "will probably be appropriate" although she stopped short of providing a specific timeframe.

The advances were supported by a rally in oil prices , which rose to the highest since last October on speculation of supply shortages as sites in key producer Nigeria come under recent attack by insurgents. U.S. crude futures were up 1.6% late in the day, while Brent, the main international variety, advanced 1.9%. Both were above the psychologically key $50 a barrel level, driving a 2.1% advance in the S&P 500's energy sector.

Also among the sectors, telecommunications services posted a 1.4% to be among the six of 10 groups rising, while half of the Dow's 30 components were stronger, led by Chevron ( CVX ) and Verizon ( VZ ).

Data on Tuesday showed Q1 non-farm productivity was revised upward from -1.0%, but at -0.6% still indicates a slow-down in the manufacturing sector. Unit labor costs were revised upward to +4.5% from +4.1% initially, beating estimates to remain unchanged. April consumer credit rose $13.4 billion to $3.60 trillion, missing estimates for an $18 billion increase.

Here's where the markets stood by the close:


Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 17.95 points (+0.1%)

S&P 500 was up 2.72 points (+0.13%)

Nasdaq Composite Index was down 6.96 points (-0.14%)


FTSE 100 was up 0.18%

Nikkei 225 was up 0.58%

Hang Seng Index was up 1.42%

Shanghai China Composite Index was up 0.07%


(+) EAC (+121.82%) Wins US Navy contracts worth $70 million

(+) LDRH (+63.82%) Acquired by Zimmer Biomet ( ZBH ) for $37 per share

(+) HMNY (+55.82%) Extending Monday's gains made on Zone Tech merger deal

(+) SRPT (+22.55%) FDA requests additional data on Duchenne muscular dystrophy drug

(+) UNFI (+14.04%) Q3 results beat estimates

(+) EDUC (+5.68%) Reports record Q1 sales


(-) DRYS (-45.34%) Warned that it may not generate sufficient cash flow to cover working capital deficit

(-) VBLT (-14.6%) To sell nearly 4.4 million shares in stock offering at $5.50 each

(-) VRX (-14.59%) Fiscal Q1 earnings miss views, cuts 2016 targets

(-) ESI (-11.82%) Wall Street Journal reporting that government issued order to raise cash reserves

(-) LC (-7.38%) Postpones annual meeting, second largest investors offloads entire stake

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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This article appears in: Investing , Stocks
Referenced Symbols: CVX , VZ , ZBH ,

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