Stocks Gain on Rising Oil Prices

Stocks Gain on Rising Oil Prices

NEW YORK (AP) -- U.S. stocks are slightly higher Thursday morning as energy companies rise with the price of oil. Banks and consumer stocks are also trading higher. Electronics retailer Best Buy is climbing after it delivered a strong quarterly report and outlook, while Wal-Mart is slipping after it announced disappointing sales. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen will testify before Congress this morning.

KEEPING SCORE: The Dow Jones industrial average gained 13 points, or 0.1 percent, to 18,881 as of 9:53 a.m. Eastern. The Standard & Poor's 500 index rose 4 points, or 0.2 percent, to 2,181. The Nasdaq composite added 3 points, or 0.1 percent, to 5,297.

OIL: Benchmark U.S. crude rebounded, rising 86 cents, or 1.9 percent, to $46.43 a barrel in New York. Brent crude, which is used to price international oils, added 85 cents, or 1.8 percent, to $47.48 a barrel in London. That helped energy companies climb. Chevron gained $1.34, or 1.2 percent, to $109.69 and Occidental Petroleum added 93 cents, or 1.3 percent, to $69.86.

CISCO, OH NO: Cisco Systems fell after its earnings forecast disappointed Wall Street. The seller of routers, switches, software and services forecast a smaller-than-expected profit for its second fiscal quarter. That canceled out a strong first-quarter report. The stock gave up $1.79, or 5.7 percent, to $29.78.

WAL-MART HITS A WALL: Wal-Mart announced disappointing sales in its third quarter. The retailer's profit also fell as it invested more money in its stores and its online business. The stock lost $2.82, or 4 percent, to $68.57. Rival Amazon picked up $5.83 to $752.45.

NICE NETAPP: Data storage company NetApp jumped after it reported a bigger profit than analysts expected for the fiscal second quarter and gave a very strong outlook for the current quarter. The stock gained $3.55, or 10.2 percent, to $38.28.

OIL DEAL: Oil refining company Tesoro will buy Western Refining for $37.30 a share, a deal the companies valued at $4.1 billion. The stock closed at $30.50 on Wednesday, and it jumped $7.66, or 25.1 percent, to $38.16 Thursday. Tesoro shares rose $3.23, or 3.8 percent, to $88.97.

BEST BUYING: Greater sales of mobile phones and increased online sales helped electronics retailer Best Buy post a strong third quarter, and the company forecast a larger fourth-quarter profit than analysts had expected. The stock climbed $2.53, or 6.3 percent, to $42.98.

YELLEN FOCUS: Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen will testify before Congress this morning. Investors expect the Fed to raise interest rates next month, just as it did last December. That was the first time it raised rates in almost a decade. Following the election of Donald Trump as the next U.S. president, investors will be looking for clues about the Fed's plans after next month.

DOLLAR: The dollar rose to 109.42 yen from 109.15 yen. The euro rose to $1.0699 from $1.0681. The ICE U.S. dollar index, which measures the strength of the dollar against six other currencies, declined slightly but remains near its highest level in 13 years.

BONDS: Bond prices slipped. The yield on the 10-year U.S. Treasury note rose to 2.24 percent from 2.22 percent.

OVERSEAS: The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares added 0.3 percent and the CAC 40 in France was slightly higher. Germany's DAX shed 0.3 percent. Japan's Nikkei 225 was flat and the Hang Seng index in Hong Kong eased 0.1 percent. The Kospi in South Korea inched higher.

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