(Updates with U.S. trading, adds commentary, changes byline,
previous dateline London)
* Oil up 1 pct as Syria, Libya oilfield shutdown support
* U.S. stocks higher
* Geopolitics underpins risk-off mood in Europe
* FACTBOX on market views & French elections
By Sinead Carew
NEW YORK, April 10 Wall Street stock indexes
rose on Monday as higher oil futures boosted the energy sector
and investors placed their bets ahead of the U.S. quarterly
corporate earnings season.
However, U.S. Treasury yields dipped in advance of the
government's $24 billion debt auction later in the day, part of
its $56 billion sale of notes and bonds this week.
In commodities, oil prices rose around 1 percent, supported
by strong demand and uncertainty over the conflict in Syria and
another shutdown at Libya's largest oilfield.
Brent crude futures, the international benchmark for
oil prices, were up 57 cents at $55.81 per barrel. U.S. West
Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures were up 65 cents
at $52.89 a barrel.
"Markets are taking some comfort in that," said Jeffrey
Kleintop, Chief Global Investment Strategist at Charles Schwab
in Boston. "When we go below $50 investors worry about global
weakness and concerns about the solvency and economies of oil
producers like Russia and Saudi Arabia."
The S&P's energy sector was the biggest percentage
gainer and strongest positive influence out of the benchmark's
11 major sectors.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 70.65 points,
or 0.34 percent, to 20,726.75, the S&P 500 gained 6.67
points, or 0.28 percent, to 2,362.21 and the Nasdaq Composite
added 14.71 points, or 0.25 percent, to 5,892.52.
Investors will also have their eye on the U.S. earnings
season, which kicks off this week with reports from some of the
"There's some optimism among investors that the earnings
reports are going to validate the rise in valuations we've seen
over the last six months," said Kleintop.
"The news on earnings will be good but I don't know that
it'll be good enough to sustain all the gains we've seen over
the last six months."
In the currency market the dollar index, which tracks the
greenback against six major currencies, was down slightly after
touching its highest point in three weeks earlier in the day.
The dollar had risen 0.5 percent Friday.
Benchmark 10-year Treasury yields were 2.364
percent, down 1 basis point from late on Friday, while the
30-year yield was 1 basis point lower at 2.988
The MSCI all world stock index was up 0.1
percent. The index has risen as much as 12.4 percent since early
November to an intraday peak on March 21. It trades at 16 times
forward earnings, compared to a 15-year average of about 14
European stocks clung to a tiny 0.01 percent gain
as investors there focused on geopolitical risks.
Top aides to U.S. President Donald Trump differed on Sunday
on where U.S. policy on Syria was headed after last week's
attack on a Syrian air base, while U.S. Secretary of State Rex
Tillerson warned the strikes were a warning to other nations,
including North Korea.
Ahead of this month's French presidential vote, investors
eyed the rise of far-left candidate Jean Luc Melenchon in polls
as this raises the possibility he will square off against
far-right leader Marine Le Pen.
"The market is focusing a bit too much on the extreme
possibilities, but I guess with the elections coming up so soon
some nerves are inevitable," said DZ Bank strategist Christian
(Additional reporting by Richard Leong in New York, Vikram
Subhedar and Abhinav Ramnarayann in London; Editing by Jeremy
Gaunt and Chizu Nomiyama)