Oil Drives Uneven Finish

Bernanke comments spark inflation worries, perk up dollar
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 10, 2008 3:47 PM CDT
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke delivers the Harvard Class Day Speech in Harvard Hard, in Cambridge, Mass. Wednesday, June. 4, 2008.   (AP Photo/Josh Reynolds)
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(Newser) – The markets ended mixed after moving between gains and losses, as traders tracked gyrations in the price of oil—which finished down 2% from earlier highs of $137 a barrel, MarketWatch reports. The Dow gained 9.44 to end at 12,289.76. The Nasdaq lost 10.52 to settle at 2,448.94, and the S&P 500 lost 3.32, closing at 1,358.44.

Financial blue chips perked back up after yesterday’s wipeout—Citigroup, JP Morgan, AIG, MBIA, Wachovia and Washington Mutual all gained between 2% and 9%. Fed chief Ben Bernanke's apparent concern over inflation sent the dollar up but investors scurrying. "I think the markets are overreacting a bit to the actual level of risk that's out there," on analyst said. "The US economy is still pretty weak, with rising unemployment."