U.S. Stocks Gain

U.S. stocks rose for the first time in three days on speculation the Federal Reserve will reduce borrowing costs to combat the highest jobless rate since 1994.

Exxon Mobil Corp., the biggest oil company, rose 4.5 percent and Alcoa Inc., the nation's largest aluminum producer, rallied 7 percent as traders bet the Fed will cut its benchmark rate to 0.5 percent at its next meeting. Nvidia Corp. jumped 15 percent on better-than-estimated earnings.

The Standard & Poor's 500 Index added 2 percent to 922.63 as of 10:19 a.m. in New York, trimming its weekly decline to less than 5 percent. The Dow Jones Industrial Average climbed 176.82 points, or 2 percent, to 8,872.61 after losing almost 10 percent in the previous two days. The Nasdaq Composite Index increased 1.8 percent to 1,636.94. Four stocks advanced for each that fell on the New York Stock Exchange.

Most Canadian stocks gained, led by Manulife Financial Corp. and Barrick Gold Corp., after bullion prices rallied and the nation's economy unexpectedly added jobs in October. The Standard & Poor's/TSX Composite Index declined 0.1 percent to 9,547.39 at 9:52 a.m. in Toronto, as 133 stocks rose and 101 fell. 

European stocks and U.S. index futures gained as higher copper and oil buoyed commodity shares and investors speculated today's jobs report will give the Federal Reserve more room to lower interest rates.

National benchmarks advanced 13 of the 18 western European markets. The U.K.'s FTSE 100 gained 2.28 percent with Royal Dutch Shell Plc and Rio Tinto Group climbing. Germany's DAX added 2.41 percent, while France's CAC 40 increased 2.46 percent.

Japan stocks fell a second day, paring a weekly gain, as the slowing global economy and stronger yen prompted Toyota Motor Corp. and Olympus Corp. to cut profit targets by more than half. The Nikkei 225 Stock Average slid 316.14, or 3.6 percent, to close at 8,583.00 in Tokyo, paring an earlier 7.1 percent decline.

Australia's S&P/ASX 200 Index slumped 2.4 percent, led by Rio Tinto Group after Moody's Investor's Services downgraded the stock, extending yesterday's 4.3 percent decline.

Indian stocks gained for the first time in three days, led by Reliance Industries Ltd. after some investors judged recent declines excessive. The benchmark Bombay Stock Exchange Sensitive Index, or Sensex, rose 230.07, or 2.4 percent, to close at 9,964.29.

China’s stocks rose after a report a unit of UBS AG bought 300 million yuan ($44 million) of mainland equities lifted optimism that recent selloffs amid a global rout are near an end. The CSI 300 Index, which tracks yuan-denominated A shares listed on China’s two exchanges, advanced 28.05, or 1.7 percent, to 1,677.83 at the close. Eight of the 10 industry groups rose.

TradingEconomics.com, Bloomberg.com
11/7/2008 7:39:38 AM