Stocks End Mixed on Rising Oil
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Wall Street ended mixed today after investors largely shrugged off a jump in oil prices and focused instead on a bullish analyst call on Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc. that eased worries about the financial sector.
Stocks ended off their lows of the session after a Ladenburg Thalmann analyst raised his rating on Lehman to “buy,” saying he believes the nation’s fourth-biggest investment bank has become a “hostile takeover candidate.” That call helped ease concerns about that company as well as the financial sector, which has been hit by a spike in bad mortgage debt.
The partial recovery in financials as well as gains by energy producers themselves helped contain investors’ anxiety over a jump in oil of more than $5 a barrel. Prices rose as investors questioned whether rising tensions with Russia could disrupt energy shipments from the world’s second-largest oil producer. Often an uptick in oil will fan Wall Street’s fears of inflation.
According to preliminary calculations, the Dow Jones industrial average rose 12.78, or 0.11%, to 11,430.21. The Dow managed a moderate gain on Wednesday after heavy losses the first two days of the week.
Broader stock indicators ended mixed today. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index rose 3.18, or 0.25%, to 1,277.72, and the Nasdaq composite index fell 8.70, or 0.36%, to 2,380.38.