Wall Street posted a modest advance Wednesday after blue chips including Alcoa Inc. extended their gains. Investors managed to look past concerns that falling crude prices would hurt profits of oil producers.
NEW YORK (AP) — Wall Street posted a modest advance Wednesday after blue chips including Alcoa Inc. extended their gains. Investors managed to look past concerns that falling crude prices would hurt profits of oil producers.
The market began the session with fresh concern that oil’s decline would hurt profits in the energy sector and scare off money from sources like hedge funds that have helped push stocks higher in recent months. Adding to that sense was a profit warning from Chevron Corp. Investors’ unease about sliding prices was a marked departure from that seen last summer and in subsequent months, when rising oil raised the specter of a jump in inflation.
Investors eventually turned their attention to upbeat news, such as word that US Airways Group Inc. raised its bid for Delta Air Lines Inc. by 20 percent to $10.2 billion. Investors were also pleased by news from Apple Computer Inc., which unveiled long-awaited plans for a mobile phone, as well as by a solid profit report from Alcoa Inc.
“There are good underlying good economic fundamentals. The buyers are starting to get a little more courageous in coming off the sidelines,” said Al Goldman, chief market strategist with A.G. Edwards & Sons. “Markets take a rest, and the sellers do their dastardly deeds and the buyers become a little more aggressive and then you lift up.”
According to preliminary calculations, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 25.56, or 0.21 percent, to 12,442.16.
Broader stock indicators also showed gains. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 2.74, or 0.19 percent, to 1,414.85, and the Nasdaq composite index rose 15.50, or 0.63 percent, to 2,459.33.