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Midday Update: Wall Street Embraces Oil's Rally, Upbeat Manufacturing Data

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The Dow continued to gain altitude on Thursday as another impressive performance in the energy complex drove the blue chip index within striking distance of another record high.

Oil futures were again posting outsized gains a day after the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries agreed to a production cut to stabilize crude oil prices . Additionally, upbeat data on the manufacturing sector coupled with a rebound in shares of energy providers was giving the financial sector a boost on the likelihood for higher U.S. interest rate and improved profits for oil companies.

The economic data supported expectations for the Federal Reserve to raise rates at the Dec 13-14 policy meeting as the manufacturing sector continues to expand. The purchasing manager's final index for November set a 13-month high of 54.1, beating expectations for an increase to 53.9 from October's 53.4. And the Institute for Supply Management manufacturing index reached a 5-month high of 53.2 from 51.9, above the 52.3 estimates.

Additionally, construction spending increased 0.5% in October. Although this was below expectations for a gain of 0.6%, it more than offset a flat September.

European shares were mostly lower despite a 34-month high in the euro-zone manufacturing index as advances in oil stocks were offset by pressure on the consumer sector. Investors were focusing on pivotal elections in Italy and Austria this weekend, both of which will likely impact upcoming EU elections. Italians will vote on whether or not to revise their constitution and reduce the number of members in the Senate, while Austria votes for a new president with anti-establishment candidate Norbert Hofer in the lead.

Crude oil was up $2.05 to $51.46 per barrel. Natural gas was up $0.12 to $3.48 per 1 million BTU. Gold was down $5.20 to $1,168.50 an ounce, while silver was up $0.10 to $16.59 an ounce. Copper was unchanged at $2.63 per pound.

Among energy ETFs, the United States Oil Fund was up $0.54 to $11.47 with the United States Natural Gas Fund was up $0.35 to $8.78. Among precious-metal funds, the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF was down 1.54% to 20.52 while SPDR Gold Shares were down 0.43% to $111.27. The iShares Silver Trust was down 0.09% to $15.65.

Here's where the markets stand at mid-day:

US MARKETS

NYSE Composite Index was up 28.31 points (+0.26%) to 10,867.06

Dow Jones Industrial Index was up 75.98 points (+0.39%) to 19,197.99

S&P 500 was down 1.64 points (-0.07%) to 2,197.17

Nasdaq Composite Index was down 52.94 points (-1.00%) to 5,270.27

GLOBAL SENTIMENT

FTSE 100 was down 33.21 points (-0.49%) to 6,750.58

DAX was down 124.73 points (-1.17%) to 10,515.57

CAC 40 was down 17.73 points (-0.39%) to 4,560.61

Nikkei 225 was up 204.64 points (+1.12%) to 18,513.12

Hang Seng Index was up 88.46 points (+0.39%) to 22,878.23

Shanghai China Composite Index was up 23.27 points (+0.72%) to 3,273.31

NYSE SECTOR INDICES

NYSE Energy Sector Index was up 226.53 points (-2.02%) to 11,442.04

NYSE Financial Sector Index was up 67.99 points (+1.01%) to 6,797.64

NYSE Healthcare Sector Index was down 78.56 points (-0.67%) to 11,590.49

UPSIDE MOVERS

(+) TLYS (+34.35%) Reported better-than-expected Q3 results

(+) BSTG (+30.37%) FDA grants Cellspan Esophageal implant orphan drug designation

(+) CLC (+16.89%) To be acquired by Parker Hannifin ( PH ) for $4.3 billion

(+) BLUE (+16.32%) Reported positive data on relapsed/refractory multiple myeloma study

DOWNSIDE MOVERS:

(-) HTBX (-59.55%) Phase II results showed no statistically significant difference in primary endpoint versus a placebo

(-) ARDM (-57.06%) Missed Orbit-3 primary and secondary endpoints in study of pulmaquin for the treatment of non-cystic fibrosis bronchiectasis

(-) GENE (-35.39%) Agreed to sell 4.8 million ADS at $1.25 to U.S. institutional investors

(-) PTN (-31.19%) Priced 25.4 million shares

(-) EXPR (-21.59%) Issued weak Q4 guidance

(-) GES (-10.25%) Misses Q3 EPS and revenue expectations, issues Q4 guidance below street view

(-) DG (-6.25%) Same store sales fell 6.9%, Q3 earnings were weaker-than-expected

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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