5 Mar 2012

Wall St gains run out

9:10 am on 5 March 2012

The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq notched their eighth week of gains in the last nine, but momentum ran out on Friday when shares ended the day lower after a thinly traded session.

Investors are focusing more on economic data lately, with a bailout package for Greece in the works, and earnings news winding down in the United States.

But rising oil prices could create some anxiety. Concerns about supply disruptions from Middle Eastern oil producers have kept Brent crude oil above $US120 per barrel and analysts say that could affect the longevity of the stock market's rally.

The Dow Jones Index fell 3 points to close at 12,978 on Friday.

The Nasdaq Composite fell 13 points to close at 2976.

The FTSE in London fell 0.3%, the DAX in Frankfurt fell 0.3% and the CAC-40 in Frankfurt was flat.

Across the Tasman, the Australian 200 Index rose 18 points to close at 4273.

The NZX 50 rose 45 points, or 1.4%, to close at 3376.

At 8.30am on Monday, the New Zealand dollar was trading at 82.93 US cents, 77.25 Australian cents, 52.41 pence, 67.95 yen and 0.6294 euro. The Trade Weighted Index was at 73.46.

Brent crude oil was trading at $US127.52 per barrel and gold was trading at $US1711.94 per ounce.