U.S. Stocks Advance, Tracking Oil for Second Day as Fed Gathers

U.S. stocks rose for a second day as energy companies rallied with crude oil, while Federal Reserve officials start a two-day meeting at which they are widely expected raise rates for the first time since 2006.

 

Chevron Corp. and Exxon Mobil Corp. gained more than 3.2 percent, taking their two-day advances to more than 6 percent. Financial shares increased as concern over turmoil in high-yield bonds abated, with asset managers Affiliated Managers Group Inc. and Franklin Resources Inc. rebounding at least 1.2 percent. 3M Co. fell 4.8 percent, weighing on industrials after cutting its profit forecast.

 

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index climbed 0.9 percent to 2,040.41 at 11:44 a.m. in New York, with the gauge headed toward its first back-to-back gains since Nov. 3. The Dow Jones Industrial Average increased 165.99 points, or 1 percent, to 17,534.49. The Nasdaq Composite Index rallied 0.8 percent. West Texas Intermediate crude futures rose 2.2 percent.

 

Another gauge of investor nervousness, the Chicago Board Options Exchange Volatility Index, fell 6.3 percent Tuesday to 21.31, extending its two-day decline to 13 percent. The measure of market turbulence known as the VIX surged 65 percent last week, the most since a record monthly jump in August.

 

All of the S&P 500’s 10 main industries climbed today, led by energy’s 2.6 percent jump. Financial and health-care companies added more than 1.1 percent.

 

Ensco Plc rose 7.4 percent to lead the energy group, while Baker Hughes Inc. and Transocean Ltd. added more than 4.2 percent. Exxon Mobil had its strongest gain in more than three months.

 

Banks surged, rising along with Treasury yields amid speculation that higher interest rates will lift profits. Comerica Inc. rallied 4.3 percent, while Regions Financial Corp. and Huntington Bancshares Inc. gained at least 3.3 percent. Among other financial companies, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. increased more than 2.8 percent

 

Source: Bloomberg

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U.S. Stocks Advance, Tracking Oil for Second Day as Fed Gathers

U.S. stocks rose for a second day along with crude oil, while Federal Reserve officials start a two-day meeting at which they are widely expected raise rates for the first time since 2006.

The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index climbed 1.1 percent to 2,043.53 at 9:32 a.m. in New York, after adding 0.5 percent yesterday. The gauge hasn’t had back-to-back gains since Nov. 3. West Texas Intermediate crude futures rose 2 percent.

Prospects for the first U.S. rate increase since 2006 and a deepening oil rout had sparked a selloff in riskier assets in December. The 1.7 percent decline for the S&P 500 is bucking the historical trend of gains in the final month. The equity gauge is on track for its worst December in 13 years and the biggest annual drop since 2008. It has declined 4 percent since a May record.

Fed officials announce their decision on borrowing costs tomorrow at 2 p.m. in Washington, and traders are pricing in a 78 percent chance of a liftoff. Data today reinforced expectations for a gradual increase in rates, with the cost of living holding steady in November, underscoring scant inflation that is well below the Fed’s goal. Excluding volatile food and fuel, the so-called core measure increased 2 percent from November last year, the most since May 2014.

Source: Bloomberg

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