Wall Street rises as energy rally continues

NYSE traders Image copyright Getty Images

(Closed): Stocks on Wall Street climbed higher on Wednesday, as rising oil prices continued to lift shares in the energy sector.

The Dow Jones rose 66.77 points to 18005.05.

The S&P 500 index was up 6.99 points at 2112.13, while the tech-focused Nasdaq was 12.89 points higher at 4974.64.

The price of oil rose for the third day in a row. The price of Brent crude rose 2.2% to $52.58 a barrel, while US crude was up 2% at $51.35.

In the energy sector Chesapeake Energy jumped 6.4%.

Drilling firm North Atlantic Drilling saw its share price climb 16.5%.

Oil prices have been boosted by news of falling crude stocks and also disruptions to oil suppliers in Nigeria following action by the Niger Delta Avengers militant group.

Investor sentiment was also lifted by the falling value of the dollar. The price of the dollar has fallen as investors now expect the Federal Reserve to keep interest rates low when it meets later this month.

"The weaker dollar and strength in commodity names is certainly helping to fuel the market's strength," said Michael James, of Wedbush Securities.

"Multinational companies are all benefiting and helping to drag the market higher."

Equipment maker Caterpillar was up 1.7%.

Shares of Under Armour rose 3.4% after the company announced a sponsorship deal with basketball star Stephen Curry.

Payment firm Verifone saw some of the day's biggest declines.

Its shares tumbled 26.7% after the company reported disappointing quarterly earnings. The company also announced it planned to cut its workforce as part of an effort to save $30m in 2017.