Stock prices rose today though the market remained jittery over tension in the Middle East and the jump in oil prices. Trading was reduced by a power outage that halted operations at several exchanges.
The Dow Jones average of 30 industrials rose 30.20 to 2,746.78.
Advancing issues nearly matched declining ones on the New York Stock Exchange, with 723 up, 778 down and 466 unchanged.
Big Board volume totaled 122.82 million shares, against 145.34 million in the previous session.
The NYSE's composite index rose 1.48 to 185.63.
The American Stock Exchange's market value index as of 1 p.m. EDT--before the market was forced to close by the power outage--stood at 338.14, down 1.18.
"We're having a very light-volume rally," said Dudley Eppel, a managing director at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette Securities Corp.
He said the market had reached an "oversold" state and investors began buying issues again. In addition, prices were boosted late in the session by computer-driven buying tied to the futures market.
"In the light-volume days the computer controls the tape. It takes it right out of our hands," he said of the program trading.
The rally was a surprise given the market's slump early in the session, Eppel said. The Dow Jones industrial average was down by as much as 32 points in the opening hour.
Trading on the American Stock Exchange, the New York Mercantile Exchange and the Commodity Exchange was cut off shortly after 1 p.m. EDT after a fire caused a power outage in Manhattan's financial district. The exchanges were forced to halt trading for the rest of the day.
The NYSE was not affected by the outage, but many brokerage houses said their operations were curtailed.
Analysts had expected the stock market to continue its downward path from Friday, when the Dow plunged 42.33 points. Concern about the Mideast prompted investors to dump stocks in favor of safer investments, such as U.S. Treasury securities and precious metals, analysts said.
Economists expect the rise in oil prices to depress the economy and put pressure on corporate profits. Before the Mideast shock, experts were looking for profits to improve in the year's second half.
The Treasury's benchmark 30-year bond was down 5/8 point, or about $6.25 per $1,000 face amount, at midday. Its yield, which rises when prices fall, climbed to 8.83% from 8.79% late Friday.
In the secondary market for Treasury bonds, prices of short-term governments rose 1/16 point, intermediate maturities were down by between 3/32 point and 11/32 point and long-term issues were down as much as 21/32 point, according to Telerate Inc., a financial information service.
The movement of a point is equivalent to a change of $10 in the price of a bond with a $1,000 face value.
The Shearson Lehman Brothers daily Treasury bond index, which measures price movements on all outstanding Treasury issues with maturities of a year or longer, lost 1.52 to 1,151.48.
Yields on three-month Treasury bills rose to 7.64% as the discount rose 3 basis points to 7.41%. Yields on six-month bills rose to 7.67% as the discount rose 3 basis points to 7.30%. Yields on one-year bills was 7.64% as the discount held at 7.15%.
The federal funds rate, the interest rate banks charge each other on overnight loans, was quoted at 8%.