NEW YORK, New York - Energy stocks drove Wall Street higher on Wednesday on the back of a rise in oil prices and OPEC production cuts.
"The market is consolidating. To see what our next driver is, we're going to watch to see if the cuts are working, if the members that agreed to them are adhering to them," Gene McGillian, director of market research at Tradition Energy told the Reuters Thomson news agency on Wednesday.
While OPEC countries were cutting back however, the U.S. was producing at current levels, and in fact has been stockpiling.
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said Wednesday that crude production rose last week to a record 11.9 million barrels a day, while crude exports neared record highs close to 3 million barrels a day.
U.S. fuel stockpiles rose more than expected EIA reported, for the fourth week in a row.
In Britain, the government of Theresa May, already hanging by a thread following a landslide loss in the parliament on its Brexit deal reached with the EU, survived a confidence motion Wednesday. The margin of 325 votes to 305 was not flash, but enough to keep May powering on. Her government now has until Monday top come up with a revised dead, or a back-up plan.
At the close of trading Wednesday the Dow Jones industrials were ahead 141.37 points or 0.59% at 24,207.16.
The Standard and Poor's 500 rose 5.80 points or 0.22% to 2,616.10.
The Nasdaq Composite strengthened 10.86 points or 0.15% to 7,034.69.
It was a good day for the U.S. dollar Wednesday as it gained ground across the board. The euro fell sraply to 1.1395 by the New York close Wednesday.
The British pound was just a fraction lower at 1.2872, showing surprising resiliance.
The Japanese yen slid to 109.03 while the Swiss franc weakened to 0.9901.
The Canadian dollar was slightly lower at 1.3255. The Australian dollar was a quarter-cent weaker at 0.7172, while the New Zealand dollar fell to 0.6777.
Overseas markets were mixed. London's FTSE 100 sagged under the confusion srrounding the Brexit vote, and the marginal win by the May government of the confidence motion. The benchmark index fell 32.34 points or 0.47% to 6,862.68.
Elsewhere in Europe the mood was more optimistic. The German Dax rose 39.45 points or 0.36% to 10,931.24.
In Paris, the CAC 40 rose 24.57 points or 0.51% to 4,810.74.
In Asian markets, Japan's Nikkei 225 closed down 112.54 points or 0.55% at 20,442.75.
The Hang Seng in Hong Kong gained 71.81 points or 0.27`% to 26,902.10.
China's Shanghai Composite was largely unchanged, adding just 0.08 of a point at 2,570.42.
The Australian All Ordinaries added 21.90 points or 0.37% to close Wednesdat at 5,893.70.