US stocks rose in volatile trading on Wednesday as a 3 per cent rise in oil prices lifted energy shares while strong profits from Boeing Co (BA.N: Quote, Profile, Research) countered market concerns about merger financing.
Boeing shares jumped to a record high and led advancers on the Dow, while Internet retailer Amazon.com Inc (AMZN.O: Quote, Profile, Research) paced the Nasdaq with a 24-per cent rise after tripling its profit.
US oil prices jumped to $75.88 a barrel after government data showed that crude stocks fell last week. Shares of energy companies followed, with Exxon Mobil Corp. (XOM.N: Quote, Profile, Research) rising 2.2 per cent on the day to $92.79.
Earlier news that Chrysler Group had postponed a $12 billion loan to finance the private equity deal to buy the company from DaimlerChrysler AG (DCXGn.DE: Quote, Profile, Research) aroused concerns that the widening fallout from the subprime mortgage industry was spreading to credit markets.
The session was marked by volatility following Tuesday's selloff, when stock indexes posted their worst one-day performance in four months, fueled by worries about the widening fallout from the subprime mortgage industry on credit markets.
"If you add up the earnings picture, there's no reason to think we should be falling off a cliff and need a fall-off like we had (on Tuesday)," said Peter Dunay, investment strategist at Leeb Capital Management Inc in New York.
The Dow Jones industrial average (.DJI: Quote, Profile, Research) gained 68.12 points, or 0.50 per cent, to end at 13,785.07. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index (.SPX: Quote, Profile, Research) was up 7.05 points, or 0.47 per cent, at 1,518.09. The Nasdaq Composite Index (.IXIC: Quote, Profile, Research) was up 8.31 points, or 0.31 per cent, at 2,648.17.
After the closing bell, shares of iPod and iPhone maker Apple Inc (AAPL.O: Quote, Profile, Research) rose 2.4 per cent to $140.50. The stock was among the top advancers on the Nasdaq during the regular session, rising 1.8 per cent to $137.26.
The company reported earnings that beat expectations and said lower component prices and more sales from company-owned stores were behind a rise in profit margins.