Fri, 22 Jan 2021

Oil Spike Pushes US Stocks Higher

Voice of America
03 Apr 2020, 09:35 GMT+10

U.S. markets closed higher Thursday, as a record jump in the rise of the price of a barrel of oil offset bad unemployment news.

The Dow Jones industrial average, S&P 500 and Nasdaq Composite Index were all up 2%.

Major indexes in London, Frankfurt and Paris were up a fraction, while Asian stocks were mixed.

U.S. crude oil rose 24% Thursday after President Donald Trump said he spoke to the Russian and Saudi leaders about production cuts.

Trump said both could slash production as much as 15 billion barrels per day to drive up prices.

But the Kremlin said President Vladimir Putin had not yet spoken to Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman and that no agreement on production cuts had been reached.

A price war between Russia and Saudi Arabia and less demand for oil because of coronavirus travel restrictions have pushed down the price of oil to about $20 a barrel.

Also Thursday, it was reported that a record 6 million people applied for unemployment benefits in the U.S. last week. The coronavirus pandemic has shuttered businesses across the globe and dealt a severe blow to the U.S. economy.

Stock prices are off about 20% from record highs set earlier this year.

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