Markets

Close Update: Stocks Stage Late Rally as Oil Surges 9%

Wednesday's rally in the oil market finally gained traction on Wall Street and fueled an impressive rebound that turned modest losses at midday into a near 200 point gain in the Dow Jones Industrial Average at the close and solid gain for the S&P 500. The Nasdaq Composite erased most of today's loss, but still closed lower for a second day.

The advance was led by the energy sector with oil more than 9% higher, followed by sizable gains for the material sector. The bounce in stocks coincided with unsuccessful attempts to breach 16,000 support in the Dow and a 15-week low in the dollar against the euro.

A two-year low in the Institute for Supply Management's non-manufacturing index eclipsed not only bullish private sector job growth and dovish comments from NY Fed president William Dudley, but early strength in oil that has repeatedly bolstered stock prices. The ISM release erased early gains and left Wall Street struggling to stay above water for most of the day.

Late in the day, oil surged thanks to persistent rumors of an emergency OPEC meeting and weaker dollar, putting the S&P 500 back over 1,900 on strength in the energy and materials sector. The financial sector, which was undermined by dovish comments from Dudley, pared early losses to close with a very modest gain.

Leading into the pivotal jobs report Friday is initial jobless claims on Thursday, expected to increase by just 2,000 to 280,000. Also scheduled for tomorrow is Q4 non-farm productivity (expected -1.8%) and unit labor costs (-4.4%), and December factory orders (expected -2.8%).

Here's where the markets stood at the close:

US MARKETS

Dow Jones Industrial Index was up 183.57 points (+1.14%)

S&P 500 was up 8.76 points (+0.46%)

Nasdaq Composite Index was down 11.49 points (-0.25%)

GLOBAL SENTIMENT

FTSE 100 was down 1.43%

Nikkei 225 was down 3.15%

Hang Seng Index was down 2.34%

Shanghai China Composite Index was down 0.38%

UPSIDE MOVERS

(+) BOOT (-35.08%) Reported better-than-expected fiscal Q3 results

(+) CNAT (+22.50%) FDA granted fast-track designation for Emricasan

(+) MY (+14.78%) CEO makes off to go private for $2.51 per ADS

(+) OCLR (+13.08%) Reported stronger-than-expected quarterly results

DOWNSIDE MOVERS

(-) JAGX (-28.94%) Priced 2 million share offering at 8.4% discount

(-) NMM (-28.57%) Q4 results missed Wall Street estimates

(-) MTCH (-12.55%) Reported increased sales that missed analyst's estimates, and lower EPS that beat estimates

(-) NOV (-8.71%) Reported weaker-than-expected Q4 results

(-) HNSN (-7.69%) Returning Tuesday's gain

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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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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