US stocks rise amid shaky US car sales

July 2nd, 2008 - 6:52 am ICT by IANS  

New York, July 2 (DPA) Major US stock indices gained Tuesday after automakers reported steep declines in monthly US sales that were still less severe than expected. June sales slid 19 percent from the year-earlier period at General Motors, largest US-based automaker, but the drop was less than feared, and GM shares rose to a two-week high.

Ford Motor Company reported an even steeper decline of 28 percent, while Toyota saw sales fall 21 percent. All blamed surging petrol prices for the downturn.

Crude oil climbed 0.7 percent to $140.97 per barrel in New York. Oil had reached a record high of more than $142 on Friday.

The blue-chip Dow Jones Industrial Average added 32.25 points, or 0.28 percent, to 11,382.26. The broader Standard & Poor’s 500 Index was up 4.91 points, or 0.38 percent, to 1,284.91. The technology- heavy Nasdaq Composite Index jumped 11.99 points, or 0.52 percent, to 2,304.97.

The US currency dropped against the euro to 63.32 euro cents from 63.47 euro cents Monday. The dollar was flat against the Japanese currency at 106.11 yen, compared to 106.1 yen Monday.

Gold leapt by 16.20 dollars to $944.50 per fine ounce.

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