European markets are called to open flat this morning.
Asian stocks dropped, dragging the regional benchmark index to its biggest streak of weekly losses since October 2008, on concern the region’s central banks will keep raising interest rates to tame inflation even amid signs the global economic recovery may be faltering.
Stocks snapped a six-day losing streak on Thursday, with banks, utilities and energy shares leading the advance.
The gains offered some welcome relief for Wall Street investors, who have been feeling the heat during the longest losing streak since July 2010.
“We’ve gotten to the point of being oversold,” said Michael James, senior equity trader with Wedbush Morgan Securities.
The Dow Jones industrial average gained 75 points, or 0.6%, to close at 12,124; the S&P 500 added 9 points, or 0.4%, to 1,289; and the Nasdaq Composite rose 9.5 points, or 0.4%, to end at 2,685.
DuPont, JPMorgan Chase, and Chevron were among the biggest gainers on the Dow. Of the 30 Dow components, only four members posted losses.
Shares of Wells Fargo and Morgan Stanley were among the biggest gainers on the S&P 500. Bank stocks are in recovery mode, after falling between 8% and 12% in the past month.
Health care stocks were also among the most solid gainers, led by shares of the managed care companies Aetna, UnitedHealth and Cigna.
Still, market sentiment remains pessimistic. The Dow and S&P 500 are still on pace to post their sixth-consecutive weekly loss.
Events this week
Friday: Investors will get May’ import and export prices from the Commerce Department at 8:30 a.m. ET. Economists expect import prices rose 0.6% last month while export prices rose 1%.