Energy companies lead US stocks slightly higher; oil surges

Energy companies lead US stocks slightly higher; oil surges
FILE - This Friday, Jan. 15, 2016, file photo shows a sign for a Wall Street subway station in New York. Stocks are opening broadly higher on Wall Street, Wednesday, May 9, 2018, led by gains in energy companies as the price of crude oil moved back above $70 a barrel. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

U.S. stocks edged higher in early trading Wednesday, led by gains in energy companies. The price of crude oil climbed back above a barrel a day after the U.S. moved to withdraw from a nuclear accord with Iran. Banks rose as bond yields headed higher. Health care stocks lagged the market.

KEEPING SCORE: The S&P 500 index rose 7 points, or 0.3 percent, to 2,679 as of 10:03 a.m. Eastern Time. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 26 points, or 0.1 percent, to 24,386. The Nasdaq added 8 points, or 0.1 percent, to 7,274. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks picked up 4 points, or 0.3 percent, to 1,591.

ENERGY: Oil prices rebounded a day after the Trump administration moved to withdraw the U.S. from a 2015 nuclear accord with Iran and reinstall sanctions on the country. Benchmark U.S. crude oil climbed .72, or 2.5 percent, to .78 per barrel in New York. Brent crude, which is used to price international oils, gained .95, or 2.6 percent, to .80 per barrel in London.

The pickup in oil prices gave energy stocks a boost. Range Resources jumped 4.4 percent to . Occidental Petroleum gained 4 percent to .40.

ON THE ROAD: TripAdvisor soared 21.5 percent to .11 after the company reported earnings that were much higher than analysts expected.

GAME ON: Electronic Arts rose 2.2 percent to .60 after the video game maker’s latest quarterly results beat forecasts.

FIZZLED: Monster Beverage slumped 7.1 percent to .33 after the company’s reported disappointing sales in the first quarter.

BOND YIELDS: Bond prices fell. The yield on the 10-year Treasury rose to 3 percent from 2.98 percent late Tuesday.

CURRENCIES: The dollar rose to 109.79 yen from 109.02 on Tuesday. The euro rose to .1879 from .1858.

MARKETS OVERSEAS: In Europe, Germany’s DAX rose 0.1 percent and France’s CAC 40 was flat. Britain’s FTSE 100 added 0.7 percent. In Asia, Japan’s Nikkei 225 dropped 0.4 percent and South Korea’s Kospi fell 0.2 percent. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng index added 0.4 percent. Australia’s S&P/ASX 200 gained 0.3 percent. Stocks rose in Taiwan, Singapore and Indonesia, but fell in Thailand and the Philippines.