US stocks rally on oil prices rise

March 7th, 2009 - 7:01 am ICT by IANS  

New York, March 7 (DPA) A jump in oil prices sparked a major rally in the final hour of trading on Wall Street Friday, helping US stocks close higher on a day that saw unemployment surge to its highest level in 25 years.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average surged more than 150 points in the final 35 minutes before close, after the price of crude oil climbed more than two dollars in its final hour of trading in New York.

The market was also buoyed by analysts’ comments that struggling US conglomerate General Electric Co had enough capital to survive the economic crisis.

The US Labour Department earlier Friday said the jobless rate increased to 8.1 per cent in February, the highest level since 1983, thanks to 651,000 job cuts on the month, the latest sign of a deepening recession.

The blue-chip Dow industrials rose 32.5 points or 0.49 percent, to 6,626.94. The broader Standard & Poor’s 500 Index edged up 0.83 points, or 0.12 percent to 683.38. For the week, the Dow tumbled 6.2 percent, the S&P 500 plunged 7 percent.

The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index was down 5.74 points, or 0.44 percent, to 1,293.85 after a lower sales forecast by computing giant Apple Inc.

The US currency fell against the euro to 79.03 euro cents from 79.71 euro cents Thursday but the dollar climbed against the Japanese currency to 98.26 yen from 97.96 yen.

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