Wall Street continues to build off of Tuesday’s rally as oil gets close to reaching $50 a barrel. At the same time, the European shares increase after a new debt deal is approved for Greece. The Dow is trading above 17,800 for the first time in over two weeks. The economic data for today is mixed, which provides little additional direction for financial markets. The U.S. trading deficit in goods expanded to $57.53 billion for April from a March deficit of $56.9 billion. It was just shy of the $60.2 billion forecast.
The Federal Housing Finance Agency house price index gained 0.7% in March, which beat its estimates for a 0.5% increase. The month prior it was revised from 0.4 to 0.5 percent. Data shows that home prices rose a healthy 6.1%, with Oregon and Florida leading the top gainers. Activity in the services sector, which is the largest sector in the U.S. economy, lessened according to a monthly index by purchasing managers. The preliminary PMI fell to 51.2 in May from April’s 52.8.
European shares continued to trade her with reaction of Wednesday’s news that the European Union agreed to give another 10.3 billion euros in bailout money after Greece’s parliament approved increased spending cuts and tax. The money should allow the Mediterranean nation to prevent missed loan payments to the International Monetary Fund and European Central Bank in July.
Crude oil finished the morning trade up $0.31 to $48.93 a barrel. Natural gas shaved $0.01 to $2.14 per 1 million BTU. Gold ended down $7.10 to $1,222.20 an ounce, whereas silver gained $0.06 to $16.32 an ounce. Copper gained $0.03 to $210 per pound. Amidst energy ETFs, the United States Oil Fund finished up 0.17% to $11.84 with the United States Natural Gas Fund down 0.56% to $6.46. Among precious-metal funds, the Market Vectors Gold Miners ETF finished up 1.02% to 22.67 while the SPDR Gold Shares lost 0.43% to $116.80. The iShares Silver Trust ended up 0.52% to $15.49.