Stocks moved broadly higher on Wall Street in afternoon trading Wednesday, on track to extend the market’s strong gains from the previous day.
A steep drop in crude oil prices tempered the gains, sending energy stocks lower. Benchmark U.S. crude plunged 3% to $51.90 a barrel following a report showing an unexpected surge in U.S. crude supplies. U.S. crude has declined in five of the past six weeks. Exxon Mobil fell 0.6% and Halliburton slid 3.8%.
Traders shrugged off a report from payroll processor ADP that showed private U.S. companies added the fewest jobs in nine years last month, as manufacturers, construction firms and mining companies cut workers. The results fell far short of economists’ forecasts.