U.S. stocks are mixed as oil price spike stokes inflation fears

U.S. stocks are mixed as oil price spike stokes inflation fears
© Reuters.

By Liz Moyer

Investing.com — U.S. stocks were mixed on Monday after a surprise output cut by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies stoked inflation fears and weighed on growth stocks.

At 10:32 ET (14:32 GMT), the was up 335 points, or 1%, while the rose 0.4% and the fell 0.3%.

Oil cartel members announced on Sunday that they will cut another 1.1 million barrels a day from production amid concern about market uncertainty. That is in addition to the two million barrels a day cut they agreed to last fall. Crude prices spiked overnight on the news.

Rising crude prices could pressure global inflation, something the Biden administration has been battling by calling on producers to raise their output. Rising oil prices will eventually make their way to gasoline prices at the pump, which are down about $1.50 a gallon from this time last year.

This puts the Federal Reserve in a tough spot. It is trying to fight inflation with increases, but recent turmoil in the banking sector has tightened credit conditions. Until Sunday, futures traders were betting that the might pause when it next meets in May, but as of Monday morning, the market’s bets have shifted in favor of another quarter of a percentage point increase.

Shares of oil companies were rising. Chevron Corp (NYSE:) shares were up 4.6%, while Exxon Mobil Corp (NYSE:) shares rose 5.6%. Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE:) shares rose 9.8% and Occidental Petroleum Corporation (NYSE:) shares rose 5.2%.

The Fed will have more data to consider from this week’s economic reports, including the March , which comes out on Friday, and the and private payrolls numbers.

Stocks are starting out the second quarter after the S&P notched a 7% gain in the first quarter, and the Nasdaq rose 17%.

Oil jumped. were up 6.2% to $80.38 a barrel, while were up 6.2% to $84.75 a barrel. rose 0.9% to $2,003.

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