Wall Street rallied after a hesitant start on Thursday as oil prices surged towards their biggest gain this year and ECB President Mario Draghi raised hopes of further stimulus.
All 10 major S&P 500 sectors were higher, with a 3.2 percent jump in energy stocks .SPNY leading the pack. All but two Dow components were higher as well.
The European Central Bank kept its main rates on hold and Draghi said the central bank would "review and possibly reconsider" its monetary policy as early as March. Many analysts had not expected a rate cut before June.
Oil prices reversed course to trade up more than 5 percent, just shy of $30 a barrel, after U.S. crude stockpiles did not rise as much as feared and Draghi's comments lifted U.S. and European stock markets. [O/R]
The Draghi-led rally comes a day after a rout in global stocks, spurred by the relentless drop in oil prices and fears of a China-led slowdown in global growth.
A volatile session on Wall Street on Wednesday ended with the S&P 500 closing at its lowest since October 2014, with many stocks hitting new 52-week lows.
"What a difference a day makes!" said Stephen Wood, Chief Market Strategist at Russell Investment Group in New York.
The U.S. stock market was bound for a correction as rich valuations were becoming a headwind, Wood said, adding that the main drivers of the market remained unchanged.
"We've got the same three horsemen: oil, China and the U.S. Federal Reserve driving the markets."
At 12:42 p.m. ET (1742 GMT), the Dow Jones industrial average .DJI was up 250.48 points, or 1.59 percent, at 16,017.22.
The S&P 500 .SPX was up 27.57 points, or 1.48 percent, at 1,886.9.
The Nasdaq Composite index .IXIC was up 56.89 points, or 1.27 percent, at 4,528.58.
Home Depot (HD.N) gave the biggest boost to the Dow, rising 4.6 percent to $121.78 after JP Morgan said warm weather could help the home improvement company.
Verizon (VZ.N) boost the telecom sector, with a 3.8 percent jump to $46.13 on a better-than-expected quarterly profit.
Kinder Morgan (KMI.N) surged 19.4 percent to $14.33 as the pipeline company outlined plans to cut debt and spending, raising the chances of a higher dividend.
Union Pacific (UNP.N) was down 4.4 percent at $70.35 after the railroad operator said weak business conditions would persist in 2016, a warning that also weighed on its peers.
Advancing issues outnumbered decliners on the NYSE by 2,481 to 546. On the Nasdaq, 1,929 issues rose and 782 fell.
The S&P 500 index showed no new 52-week highs and six new lows, while the Nasdaq recorded two new highs and 63 new lows.
(Reporting by Abhiram Nandakumar in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D'Souza)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
Firstpost is now on WhatsApp. For the latest analysis, commentary and news updates, sign up for our WhatsApp services. Just go to Firstpost.com/Whatsapp and hit the Subscribe button.
Updated Date: Jan 22, 2016 00:00:15 IST