U.S. stocks opened higher Tuesday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average soaring more than 275 points, after aluminum producer Alcoa Inc. kicked off earnings season, beating Wall Street forecasts. Alcoa reported fourth-quarter results after the closing bell Monday, posting its best annual results since 2008, driven by increased sales of aluminum supplies to automakers and aerospace companies. Shares of Alcoa edged down 0.25 percent on Tuesday, to $16.13.
On Tuesday morning, the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which measures the share prices of 30 large industrial companies, jumped 275 points, or 1.53 percent, at 17,910.44; the S&P 500 stock index gained 27.49 points, or 1.36 percent, at 2,055.30. The Nasdaq Composite added 80.49 points, or 1.73 percent, at 4,745.40.
Major U.S. banks post quarterly results later this week, including JPMorgan Chase & Co. and Wells Fargo & Company on Wednesday, followed by Bank of America Corporation and Citigroup Inc. Thursday, and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. on Friday.
Separately, oil prices tumbled below $45 a barrel Tuesday, flirting with six-year lows, after an oil minister from OPEC maintained that the group would not be slashing its production outlook for 2015. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude, the benchmark for U.S. oil prices, dropped as low as $44.20 per barrel Tuesday but reversed and traded above $45 per barrel early in the session. WTI dropped 1.98 percent Tuesday, to $46.16 per barrel, for Feb. 15 delivery, on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude, the global benchmark for oil prices, dropped 3.14 percent Tuesday, to $45.94 per barrel, for Feb. 15 delivery, on the London ICE Futures Exchange.
Tuesday is a light day on the economic calendar, with the U.S. government’s federal budget for December released at 2 p.m. EST.