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107 Days ago

New York: US stocks rebounded strongly on Friday as investor sentiment was buoyed by spiking oil prices.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average leapt 313.66 points, or 2.00 percent, to 15,973.84. The S&P 500 jumped 35.70 points, or 1.95 percent, to 1,864.78. The Nasdaq Composite Index gained 70.68 points, or 1.66 percent, to 4,337.51.

Oil prices spiked Friday, with the US oil soaring over 12 percent, boosted by the possibility that major production countries may cooperate to curb production.

The energy minister of the United Arab Emirates reportedly said the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries was ready to cooperate on production cuts with other exporters.

Meanwhile, US energy firms cut oil rigs for the eighth straight week, according to the data from oil service company Baker Hughes Friday. Analysts expected major US shale oil companies to slash spending after crude prices plunged.

Persistent oversupply, bloated inventories and a slew of negative economic news dragged crude prices to 12-year lows Thursday.

On the economic front, the US Commerce Department announced Friday that advance estimates of US retail and food services sales for January came in at $449.9 billion, an increase of 0.2 percent from the previous month and on par with market consensus.

US import price index came out better than expected. In January, prices for US imports decreased 1.1 percent for the second consecutive month, beating market estimates of a 1.4-percent decline, the Labor Department reported Friday.

"As far as market jitters are concerned, both reports this morning served to quell fears of a broad based slowdown in the economy," said Jay Morelock, an economist at FTN Financial, in a note.

Despite Friday's solid gains, all three major indices still posted weekly losses, with the Dow, the S&P 500, and the Nasdaq going down 1.4 percent, 0.8 percent and 0.6 percent respectively. (IANS)

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