Stocks gained Friday in light trading ahead of the holiday weekend as investors weighed higher oil prices against a government report that showed rising personal incomes and a decline in consumer spending.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 4.95 points, or 0.1 percent, to close at 10,542.55. The Standard & Poor's 500 Index was up 1.16 points, or 0.1 percent, at 1,198.78. The Nasdaq Composite Index was up 4.49 points, or 0.2 percent, at 2,075.73.
Crude futures moved toward $52 a barrel Friday as traders were cautious ahead of the Memorial Day holiday weekend, the start of the U.S. summer driving season. Light, sweet crude for July delivery on the New York Mercantile Exchange rose as high as $52 before settling at $51.85 a barrel, up 84 cents.
Local oil companies Occidental Petroleum Corp. and Unocal Corp. enjoyed the gain in crude prices, moving up 1.1 percent to $73.52 and 2.3 percent to $57.56, respectively.
And U.S. consumer spending rose a smaller-than-expected 0.6 percent in April, down from a big 0.9 percent jump in March, while personal incomes rose 0.7 percent, the Commerce Department said on Friday.
Another local mover included Peerless Systems Corp., whose shares rose 5.9 percent to $3.59 after the El Segundo-based maker of software for copiers and fax machines boosted its fiscal 2006 profit forecast late Thursday, citing higher-than-expected revenue. Full-year net income is expected to top $2 million, up from previous guidance in excess of $1 million.
For reprint and licensing requests for this article, CLICK HERE.