This story was updated at 4:25 p.m. EST.
U.S. stocks closed higher Tuesday, moving out of synch with other global markets, especially in Asia, as investors watched oil prices jump and absorbed positive news on consumer confidence. The jump in U.S. equities came a day before the U.S. Federal Reserve’s first public statement for 2016, which could indicate whether further interest rate hikes will be delayed beyond March.
An interest rate hike increases the cost of corporate borrowing, which would put downward pressure on stocks that are faltering after a seven-year bull run fueled largely by unusually low interest rates.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDEXDJX:.DJI) closed up 282.01 points, or 1.78 percent, on Tuesday, to 16,167.23. The broader Standard & Poor's 500 index (INDEXSP:.INX ) gained 26.55 points, or 1.41 percent, to 1,903.63. The Nasdaq composite (INDEXNASDAQ:.IXIC) rose 49.18 points, or 1.09 percent, to 4,567.67.
All 10 S&P 500 sectors closed up, with the biggest gains in energy and telecommunications stocks. Dow 30 gains were led by 3M Co. (NYSE:MMM) and Johnson & Johnson (NYSE:JNJ), which both reported positive fourth quarter 2015 earnings results Tuesday morning.
A report released earlier in the day showed the Conference Board’s widely tracked monthly consumer confidence hit a reading of 98.1 this month, up from a revised 96.3. That’s well above the consensus of analysts polled by Thomson Reuters, which predicted a reading of 96.5.
“Consumers for now appear to be looking past the market sell-off, seeing bright prospects as the real economy keeps them on a solid footing,” Gregory Daco, head of U.S. macroeconomics at Oxford Economics, said in a note Tuesday. “While it is possible that confidence may falter in coming months due to the volatility spike, firm fundamentals should keep consumers confident overall.”
The yield on the benchmark U.S. 10-year Treasury yield rose to 2.03 percent. The bond yield typically rises when investors are more confident about the markets and falls when concerns flare. Gold, another so-called safe harbor investment, gained 1.15 percent $1,118.00 per ounce. Gold prices tend to fall as confidence in the markets rise. The rise in gold prices may have been a response to the big drop in Asian stocks.
Oil prices rebounded on Tuesday after OPEC Secretary-General Abdalla El-Badri said Monday in London that it was time for the oil producers to tackle the global supply glut. Oil prices have largely dictated the direction of global markets over the past few weeks as traders perceive them to be a proverbial canary in a coalmine indicating a global recession.
U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude advanced 3.03 percent to $31.26 per barrel for March delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, the other major global benchmark, jumped 3.61 percent to $31.60 for March delivery on the London ICE Futures Exchange.
Major global stock markets were mixed, with Eastern markets landing deep in negative territory while Europe stocks closed in the green.
China’s broad CSI 300 Index plunged 6.02 percent by the closing bell on Tuesday while the mainland Shanghai Composite Index followed suit, dropping 6.42 percent. The smaller Shenzhen Composite dropped 6.9 percent.
In Europe, the broad Stoxx Europe 600 index edged up 0.87 percent by the end of trading on Tuesday. The Paris-based CAC 40 closed up 1.05 percent, while London’s FTSE rose 0.59 percent. Frankfurt’s DAX gained 0.89 percent.