April 19, 2024

Stocks & Bonds: Shares Advance Modestly, Led by Commodities

Occidental Petroleum and Halliburton gained at least 1.6 percent as oil climbed after a report showing that distillate fuel supplies in the United States fell to a two-year low. Freeport-McMoRan Copper Gold advanced 2.4 percent as copper rose after Deutsche Bank said prices were likely to rebound. Fifth Third Bancorp and BBT increased more than 1 percent after Fitch Ratings said it probably would not downgrade German banks because of their holdings of Greek debt.

The Standard Poor’s 500-stock index rose 4.19 points, or 0.32 percent, to 1,320.47. The Dow Jones industrial average rose 38.45 points, or 0.31 percent, to 12,394.66. The Nasdaq rose 15.22 points, or 0.55 percent, to 2,761.38.

“It’s a risk-on day,” said Russ Koesterich, the global chief investment strategist based in San Francisco for the iShares unit of BlackRock. “On days when you get a little bit more conviction about the economic recovery, stocks and commodities move up. The risk-on day is also a manifestation of companies most tied to the economy.”

The S. P. 500 has fallen 3.2 percent from an almost three- year high on April 29 on concern about Europe’s debt crisis and weaker-than-forecast economic data. Indexes of commodity producers slumped at least 5 percent during that period. Still, the benchmark gauge rose 5 percent since the end of 2010 on government stimulus measures and higher-than-forecast profits.

Barometers of energy and raw material shares rose at least 1.3 percent on Wednesday, the two biggest gains of 10 industry groups in the S. P. 500. The Thomson Reuters/Jefferies CRB Index of 19 raw materials rallied 1.6 percent. Oil rose above $101 a barrel in New York. Copper gained the most in a week as Deutsche Bank said that prices were likely to rebound, after similar comments from the Goldman Sachs Group and JPMorgan Chase.

Occidental Petroleum, the biggest onshore oil producer in the continental United States, added 1.7 percent to $104.22. Halliburton rose 5 percent to $49.87 after Morgan Stanley raised its recommendation for the company to “overweight” from “equal-weight.” Freeport, the largest publicly traded copper producer, gained 2.4 percent to $49.98.

“The rally in stocks and commodities reflects the view that the global economic recovery is in place,” said Eric Teal, chief investment officer at First Citizens BancShares in Raleigh, N.C. “There had been some concern about softness in recent data and that’s why we saw a pullback. Profits and margins should be sustained at these levels. The trend is higher and the rally will be driven by companies most exposed to economic growth.”

Financial companies helped pace a rebound in benchmark indexes as Fitch Ratings said German banks had “manageable” risks related to Greek sovereign debt and the Mediterranean country’s economy.

“The worst consequence of any Greek sovereign default for German and other European banks would be a sharp increase in general capital market and creditor risk aversion at a time when many banks are still in rehabilitation mode,” Michael Dawson-Kropf, an analyst at Fitch based in Frankfurt, said in an e-mail.

Fifth Third Bancorp, Ohio’s largest lender, added 1 percent to $12.61. BBT rose 1.8 percent to $26.67.

Take-Two Interactive Software rose 3.2 percent to $16.62. The company, which produces the Grand Theft Auto video games, reported a fourth-quarter loss, excluding some items, that was 55 percent narrower than the average analyst estimate.

Bookings for goods meant to last at least three years fell 3.6 percent in April, the most since October, after a 4.4 percent increase in March, a Commerce Department report showed. Economists projected a 2.5 percent drop in April, according to the median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey.

Interest rates were steady. The Treasury’s benchmark 10-year note fell 5/32, to 99 30/32, and the yield rose to 3.13 percent from 3.11 percent late Tuesday.

Article source: http://feeds.nytimes.com/click.phdo?i=c8c15dbbdb91311bed2b5f180a44e447

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