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U.S. stocks modestly higher after ADP; Dow up 0.24%

Forex Pros - U.S. stock markets were modestly higher after the open on Wednesday, after upbeat data on U.S. non-farm private employment, however gains were capped as oil prices surged above USD100 a barrel.

During early U.S. trade, the Dow Jones Industrial Average added 0.24%, the S&P 500 index rose 0.28%, while the Nasdaq Composite index climbed 0.42%.

Earlier in the day, payroll processing firm ADP said U.S. private sector employment rose by 217,000 in February, better than the expected 175,000.

Meanwhile, crude futures for delivery in April were trading at USD100.66 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange, after peaking at USD101.41 earlier in the day.

Shares in search engine giant Yahoo jumped 3.6% after it said it was in talks to dispose of its 35% stake in its joint venture with Japanese telecommunications firm Softbank.

Consumer electronics giant Apple saw shares add 0.88%, as the maker of the iPad was expected to introduce a new version of its popular tablet computer later in the day at an event in San Francisco.

However, the largest U.S. office supply retailer Staples dropped 1.38% after it reported fourth quarter of USD6.42 billion, falling short of expectations for revenue of USD6.46 billion.

Meanwhile, the International Air Transport Association, the global trade body for airlines, lowered its 2011 industry profit forecast by 5.5% to USD8.6 billion, citing the recent spike in jet-fuel prices.

Following the news, US Airways saw shares drop 1.51%, shares in rival JetBlue slumped 1.25%, while AMR, the holding company for American Airlines, saw shares dip 1.18%.

Across the Atlantic, European stock markets were lower. The EURO STOXX 50 shed 0.78%, France's CAC 40 fell 0.62%, Germany's DAX was down 0.7%, while Britain's FTSE 100 declined 0.4%.

Later in the day, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke was to testify for a second day before the Senate Banking Committee, while the Fed was to publish its Beige Book.

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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.


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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