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While you were sleeping: UPDATED US stocks rise, oil slides on Opec stalemate

Oil falls 4% while Dow resumes post-election climb after Monday's correction.

Margreet Dietz
Wed, 30 Nov 2016

Energy stocks fell with oil prices amid a stalemate about an agreement to cut production by the world's biggest producers.

Meanwhile, Wall Street advanced, pushing the Nasdaq to a record high, amid optimism about the US economy.

A Commerce Department report shows gross domestic product expanded at a better than expected 3.2% annual pace in the third quarter, up from a previously estimated 2.9%, and accelerating from a 1.4% rate in the second quarter.

"Growth is going to remain heavily reliant on the consumer, but consumers are in a good position to lead that charge," Detroit-based Ameriprise Financial senior economist Russell Price told Bloomberg. "Overall, it's an encouraging sign for the path ahead."

At the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 23.70 points, or 0.1% to 19,121.60, while the Nasdaq Composite Index gained 0.2% to 5379.92 after touching a record high 5403.86 during the session.

The Standard & Poor's 500 Index added 0.1% to 2204.66.

In the Dow, UnitedHealth and Boeing shares, up 3.6% and 1.2% respectively, outweighed declines in Chevron and Exxon Mobil shares, down 1.5% and 0.9% respectively.

Oil slides 4%
Oil prices slid about 4% to $US45.23 a barrel amid signs that Opec negotiations on production cuts are deadlocked. One stumbling block is that Iran says it won't reduce output.

"You're seeing oil, both in terms of the physical commodity as well as energy equities, under pressure and this is on the back of increased scepticism surrounding the likelihood of OPEC reaching any type of consensus" on Wednesday, John Hancock Financial Services co-head of North American asset allocation Marcelle Daher told Reuters.

Tiffany shares climbed 4% as the jeweller's better than expected earnings bolstered optimism about the outlook. Tiffany posted its first increase in sales in eight quarters.

In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index ended the session with a 0.3% increase from the previous close. Germany's DAX Index gained 0.4%, and France's CAC 40 Index climbed 0.9%.

Italian referendum
Here, the focus is on this weekend's constitutional referendum in Italy.

"European stocks should remain volatile and with lower volume throughout the week," Herbert Perus, head of equities at Raiffeisen Capital Management in Vienna, told Bloomberg.

"Many investors are on the sidelines waiting for the Italian referendum. We have an important Opec meeting ahead, therefore the oil price is shaky and so are oil-related companies."

The UK's FTSE 100 Index shed 0.4% as mining stocks pulled back with base metals and oil.

Switzerland's Actelion’s shares closed 10% higher in Zurich. Johnson & Johnson raised its takeover offer for Europe's biggest biotech firm, Bloomberg reported, citing people familiar with the matter.


Margreet Dietz
Wed, 30 Nov 2016
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While you were sleeping: UPDATED US stocks rise, oil slides on Opec stalemate